Free BCG Webinar: Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG, on “The Family Tapestry”

The Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG) is pleased to present a free webinar on Tuesday, 19 May 2015, at 8 pm EDT. President Jeanne Bloom, CG, will speak on “The Family Tapestry: Integrating Proof Arguments into the Genealogical Narrative.”

When we tell a story, sometimes we need to stop and explain. Just how did we figure out who the main character’s mother was—without any census, vital records, or probate records? This problem confronts every genealogist who prepares a portfolio for certification as well. Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG, will use the language of weaving and the work of distinguished philosopher Stephen Toulmin to deal with this perennial issue in writing up genealogical research.

Seating is limited for this webinar. Please register early and sign in early to avoid disappointment.

The board is an independent certifying body and author of the updated 2014 Genealogy Standards.

BCG President Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG

Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG, is president of BCG and a full-time professional researcher specializing in Chicago and Cook County, Illinois, forensic genealogy, problem solving, and multi-generational family histories. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in history from the University of Illinois at Chicago and a second-year certificate from the University of Chicago’s publishing program. Her interest in genealogy began much earlier. Rather than having her grandmother read her a story before naptime, Jeanne would ask to hear a story about when she was a little girl.

“We are pleased to offer this informative webinar,” said BCG treasurer Michael Ramage, J.D., CG. “The Board for Certification of Genealogists strives to foster public confidence in genealogy by promoting an attainable, uniform standard of competence and ethics. Educating all family historians is part of this mission.”

There is no charge, but space is limited. Please register for Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG, “The Family Tapestry: Integrating Proof Arguments into the Genealogical Narrative,” on 19 May 2015, 8:00 pm EDT (7 CDT, 6 MDT, 5 PDT) at the following link: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4634996031472159746.

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. For more information send an email to office@BCGcertification.org.

Please visit http://bcgcertification.org/blog/bcg-webinars to learn about BCG’s previous webinars.

CG and Certified Genealogist are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, used under license by board certificants after periodic evaluations. The board name is registered in the US Patent and Trademark Office.

 

Skillbuilding: Miller on the Anatomy of a Military Pension

SpringBoard, an official blogger for the 2015 NGS Family History Conference, is pleased to offer a review of this skillbuilding lecture, presented Wednesday, 13 May 2015:

W141: Julie Miller, CG, “Anatomy of a Military Pension,” reviewed by Darcie Hind Posz, CG

Julie Miller is organized and methodical. Her lecture on evaluating a military pension file takes the listener step by step through the process of acquiring the file, then arranging, processing, organizing, and analyzing its contents. She tells us how to acquire a copy of the file and helps us to understand what information is in the pension file.

Miller provides tips, such as how arranging the documents chronologically and separating the pensioner’s file from the widow’s file can organize the data. She reminds us to place a citation *somewhere* on the document, to number each document (in brackets) at the beginning of the citation, and to cite each document (in addition to the general citation).

Miller guides us to create an inventory, an itemized list of documents. She provides a great inventory template in the NGS Conference Syllabus. (The template would also be pretty amazing for large probate packets and court records, and I plan to use it for that purpose in the future.) This wonderful spreadsheet in expanded format is available for free at her website.

The next steps of the review process are to

  • read each document several times, including the boilerplate, until the purpose of each is understood,
  • transcribe each record (because transcribing is the “foundation of thorough analysis” and will help us catch nuances),
  • create an abstract.

As we analyze and evaluate, we consider each document’s purpose, the source type, and the reliability of the information it provides. If we are working on a specific research question, we consider what evidence the information offers. Additional resources we might review include pension acts and laws.

The subject examples are well illustrated and described for both in-person attendees and audio recordings. This lecture is available from Jamb Tapes, Inc. It enhances learning about transcribing and abstracting records.

 

CG, Certified Genealogist, CGL, and Certified Genealogical Lecturer are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, used under license by Board-certified genealogists after periodic competency evaluation, and the board name is registered in the US Patent & Trademark Office.

BCG’s Facebook Group—1000 and Counting

The Board for Certification of Genealogists Facebook Group recently added its 1000th member! Friends include more than 1000 individuals who are board-certified genealogists or who are pursuing or interested in the process of certification. We think it’s wonderful that so many genealogists would strive to have their work—whether for pay, pro bono, or for themselves—meet the standards of our field.

The Facebook group was recently reorganized to be a more active site. Its purpose is to be a platform where BCG associates and those who are interested in or considering the process of certification can interact, ask questions, and share news pertinent to the organization and the field. BCG’s blog, SpringBoard, has a place for comments, but BCG wanted to provide an additional forum with even more give-and-take. While those “on-the-clock” have the ACTION email list, there was no place for interaction between BCG associates and interested individuals who have not yet submitted their preliminary applications. The Facebook group is now that place.

Because it is an informal forum, comments by associates and non-associates on BCG’s Facebook page do not necessarily reflect the official views of the Board for Certification of Genealogists. If you are not yet a member of BCG’s Facebook group, you can ask to be added here.

by Dawne L. Slater, CG, BCG Facebook Group Administrator


CG or Certified Genealogist is a service mark of the Board for Certification of Genealogists®, used under license by board-certified genealogists after periodic competency evaluation.

Coming from OnBoard in May 2015

OnBoard: Newsletter of the Board for Certification of Genealogists is scheduled to publish in May 2015. We’re privileged to offer a preview of the content.

“Embrace the Negative: Recognizing and Applying Negative Evidence”

Stefani Evans, CG, shows us how negative evidence applies to a genealogical problem, how it can suggest a hypothesis and help direct research. Standard 40, evidence mining, says that genealogists “give equal attention to direct, indirect, and negative evidence.”[1] If negative evidence as useful seems counterintuitive, Stefani’s article will be enlightening.

“Anatomy of a Failure: What I Learned from My First Portfolio”

Fear of failure is a huge stumbling block for many applicants. Harold Henderson, CG, experienced the “insufficient for certification” evaluation on his first portfolio submission. In time he prepared a new, successful submission. Learn from Harold’s experience as he offers seven suggestions for new applicants.

OnBoard publishes three issues per year. A subscription is included in annual associate fees and for applicants “on the clock.” Subscriptions are also available to the general public for $15.00 a year (currently) through the BCG website, here. Issues back to 1995 can also be ordered online, here.

 [1] Board for Certification of Genealogists, Genealogy Standards (Nashville, Tenn.: Ancestry.com, 2014), 24.


CG or Certified Genealogist is a service mark of the Board for Certification of Genealogists®, used under license by board-certified genealogists after periodic competency evaluation.

 

NGS 2015 Live Streaming Signup Deadline


Can’t make it to St. Charles for the 2015 NGS Conference? You can still take advantage of ten lectures streamed to you live. They will also be accessible for three months after the conference closes. Several lectures from the BCG Skillbuilding track are included in “Day Two: Methodology Techniques.” The signup deadline is approaching, so be quick if you want access to these lectures.

The live streaming registration deadline is midnight, Wednesday, 29 April.

BCG Webinars Now Available On Demand

We promised we’d let you know. Starting today, you can access BCG webinars on demand from Vimeo.com. Two are free. All the others are available for 24-hour rental ($2.99 each) or for purchase of unlimited streaming and download ($12.99 each).

Go to the “BCG Webinars” tab at the top of this page for full access to the free webinars and free previews of all.

Free BCG Webinar: Jean Wilcox Hibben on Why to Certify

Tuesday, 21 April 2015, Jean Wilcox Hibben, PhD, MA, CG, will present “Certified or Certifiable? Why a Genealogist Would Go Through All that Trouble.”

Jean Wilcox Hibben, PhD, MA, CG

It’s no secret that becoming Board-certified is a great deal of work. There is no guarantee that an applicant will attain that goal on the first (or even second) attempt. So why do genealogists seek certification? What are the benefits of becoming Board-certified? What does it mean to do genealogical work to a higher standard? How can the effort to prepare an application reap rewards (personal and financial)?

The Board for Certification of Genealogists will present a webinar on this subject free to the public on Tuesday, 21 April 2015, at 8pm EDT. Jean Wilcox Hibben, PhD, MA, CG, will offer some answers to these questions and some suggestions for how to prepare before “starting the clock.”

Jean has been involved in family research for over thirty-five years. She is the director of the Corona, California, Family History Center and a director of the Association of Professional Genealogists. She served as lead researcher on the PBS television program Genealogy Roadshow in 2013. Jean is also on the boards of the Genealogical Speakers Guild, the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors, the California State Genealogical Alliance, and the Corona Genealogical Society. She maintains a website at www.circlemending.org, and has been known to call square dances and play the guitar. A native of the Chicago suburbs and retired college professor, she writes frequently for various genealogy publications and is nationally recognized for her informative and entertaining presentations.

Seating is limited for this free webinar. Register early and sign in early to avoid the disappointment of finding all the seats already taken. Registration by itself does not guarantee a seat; it only assures access to the link to sign in.

To register for Jean Wilcox Hibben, PhD, MA, CG, “Certified or Certifiable? Why a Genealogist Would Go Through All that Trouble,” to be presented on 21 April 2015, at 8pm EDT (7pm CDT, 6pm MDT, 5pm PDT), go to 
https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/1789799687151712001.


CG or Certified Genealogist is a service mark of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, used under license by Board-certified genealogists after periodic competency evaluation, and the board name is registered in the US Patent & Trademark Office.

 

Welcome, Cari Taplin, CG

Cari Taplin, CG

Cari Taplin, CG, tweeted her new BCG-associate status the day she learned about it: “I just learned I got my CG! @BCGenealogists Thank you! #genealogy.” She had already blogged about the portfolio preparation process when, with great relief, she turned hers in (“BCG Portfolio Madness”). To acknowledge the support of all those who helped her on her application journey, she blogged again, “Great News: I did it!” Cari loves to write, and her engaging personal style comes through in her blog with the unique, clever name, Genealogy Pants. Her published work also includes “Electronic Resources: Organize and Publish a Family Tree,” a course for the National Institute of Genealogical Studies; articles for the NGS Magazine; and six Legacy QuickGuides. She enjoys writing genealogies, so the portfolio’s Kinship-Determination Project was a breeze for her.

Cari writes, and she lectures, too: “I guess if I had to pick one thing that really makes my day it is lecturing and seeing people be genuinely interested in learning how to do something or genuinely enjoying the story I’m telling. I love helping people figure out a different way to work at a research problem.” To date she has made many presentations to local groups, and she’s aiming for the national stage.

Even while preparing a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in painting, Cari was drawn to research. “In any class where we were assigned a research paper, I was secretly happy while everyone else groaned.” The step from art to genealogy followed the fun stories Cari’s grandparents told. One hinted at a family connection to cowboy actor Roy Rogers. Cari worked briefly as a receptionist for a firm with a high-speed internet connection. She spent free time between incoming calls researching the story online. Then she began searching obituaries, which led to interviewing older relatives, and finally she joined her local genealogical society. (She discovered along the way that the story was a myth.)

Among all the folks who befriended and mentored Cari on her certification journey, she especially recognizes the late Birdie Monk Holsclaw. “I owe so much to her. She took me under her wing; we met at least monthly to work on projects and discuss genealogy in general. She was the person who told me I should become a speaker, and so I did. She was the first person who encouraged me to write an article and helped me proof it. She told me I should seek certification and so I did. She was such a wonderful person and I owe nearly all of this to her.”

But Genealogy Pants? It is, Cari explains, her quirky sense of humor: “’Genealogy Pants’ [is like] calling someone ‘smarty pants’ or ‘fancy pants.’ I just got tired of hearing the same old words in people’s businesses ‘tree,’ ‘roots,’ ‘ancestor,’ ‘ancestry,’ ‘branch,’ and so on. I like to stand out in a quirky way.” She will now stand out as a Board-certified genealogist. She of course works from home dressed in her pajama pants.

Cari prepared her BCG portfolio in the midst of moving her family from Colorado to Texas. If she can do that, she can do anything. She alerts us in her blog, “I’m so excited to start this next part of the genealogical journey, watch out!”

Cari can be reached at cataplin@gmail.com. Check out Genealogy Pants, or follow her on Twitter, @cataplin. Welcome, Cari!


CG or Certified Genealogist is a service mark of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, used under license by Board-certified genealogists after periodic competency evaluation, and the board name is registered in the US Patent & Trademark Office.

 

Discussion of BCG Certification for APG Members

Members of the Association of Professional Genealogists have an opportunity tonight, Wednesday, 18 March, to discuss BCG certification with BCG past president Elissa Scalise Powell, CG, CGL. Elissa explains, ”With only twenty-five APG members allowed to be in attendance on a first-come, first-logged-in basis, we will have an intimate chat about certification, how to prepare, and what it takes to be successful.” This is a great opportunity to learn about certification and ask questions of someone who has been Board-certified for twenty years. Access information is available on the Members page of the APG website.

18 March 2015, 9:00 p.m. (EST/EDT): “Certification: Process, Requirements, and Readiness” by Elissa Scalise Powell, CG, CGL

The meeting room will open fifteen minutes prior to the scheduled starting time and holds a maximum of twenty-five attendees. Access will be on a first-come, first-served basis.

This is meant to be a discussion on a particular topic, not a lecture or a webinar. It is through the give and take of these discussions that the best learning experiences will occur. Please come prepared with your questions.

If you have any questions, please contact Melanie D. Holtz, CG, at Melanie@holtzresearch.com.

We hope you enjoy the meetings!

APG Professional Development Committee


CG, Certified Genealogist, CGL, and Certified Genealogical Lecturer, are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, used under license by Board-certified genealogists after periodic competency evaluation, and the board name is registered in the US Patent & Trademark Office.