Early Bird Registration Ends October 31st for SLIG 2014 – Course 5 – Credentialing: Accreditation, Certification, or Both?

Last weekend in Salt Lake City we kicked-off celebrations of the 50th anniversaries of two credentials, those administered by the Board for Certification of Genealogists® and the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional GenealogistsSM. The banquet in Salt Lake City heard speaker Judy G. Russell, JD, CGSM, CGLSM, discuss the instigating factors for the establishment of credentials as well as the developments in those organizations over the last 50 years.

Elissa Scalise Powell, CG, CGL

To continue the celebration in the “50th year of our age,” a track on accreditation and certification is included in SLIG 2014. Apryl Cox, AG®, Co-Chair of the Testing Committee of ICAPgen, and Elissa Scalise Powell, CGSM, CGLSM, President of BCG, will coordinate Course 5 in the upcoming Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, 13-17 January 2014. Course 5 is “Credentialing: Accreditation, Certification, or Both?”

Apryl Cox, AG    

The two called on great speakers to present topics in the week’s worth of classes. Their instructors include David Rencher, AG, CG; F. Warren Bittner, CG; Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL; Kelly Summers, AG; Linda Gulbrandsen, AG; Ray Clifford, AG; Raymon Naisbitt, AG; Thomas W. Jones, PhD, CG, CGL; and Mark Lowe CG. Classes will cover the histories of the two organizations, their application processes, and how the applications are judged. Practical exercises will be part of the workshop experience. In the concluding lecture, David Rencher will ask, “How Many Credentials Should I Have?”

Early-bird registration ends of October 31st for the Utah Genealogical Society’s 2014 Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy. There are still a few seats left in Course 5. For more information, click here.

Have You Heard of Dual- and Cross-Credentialing?

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.

© 2009 by Jim Ison. Shared with permission.

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.

© 2009 by Jim Ison. Shared with permission.

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.

 

Credentialing: Accreditation, Certification, or Both?

Beach tug of war at Southport, Queensland, Australia, 1917. From the collection of the State Library of Queensland. No known copyright restrictions.

Apryl Cox, AG®, and Elissa Scalise Powell, CGSM, CGLSM, are coordinators of Course 5 at the 2014 Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy. The track is “Credentialing: Accreditation, Certification, or Both?” Apryl will coordinate presentations about the credentialing process used by the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPgen) and Elissa will coordinate presenters for BCG.

The institute will run 13-17 January 2014 at the Radisson Hotel in Salt Lake City. SLIG registration opens June 1 at 9:00 AM Mountain time (11:00 AM Eastern time). Registration must be done online. At that time, a registration button will appear on the website of the sponsoring society, the Utah Genealogical Association. Many popular courses sell out within minutes.

The credentials of both organizations mark their 50th anniversary in 2014. BCG was started by the American Society of Genealogists. That society elects life members based on their “published genealogical accomplishments.”[1] Successful BCG candidates submit a portfolio of work that meets standards.

The Accredited Genealogist credential originated in the Family History Library in Salt Lake City to replace the functions of the Research Service, an in-house group of volunteers and library staff performing research and reporting for patrons.[2] Successful ICAPGen candidates submit a research report and pass a proctored written exam.



[1]  “Significant Contributions,” American Society of Genealogists; www.fasg.org : viewed 29 May 2013.

[2] Jill N. Crandell, “A Brief History of the Accreditation Program,” Kory L. Meyerink, Tristan L. Tolman, and Linda K. Gulbrandsen, editors, Becoming an Excellent Genealogist (Utah: ICAPgen, 2012), 214.

Updated 3 June 2013 to correct number of track at SLIG to 5.

Please Welcome Rebecca Koford as a Board-certified Genealogist

Rebecca Whitman Koford of Mt. Airy, Maryland, earned the credential of Certified GenealogistSM this month. Genealogy has been her passion since childhood. She has been working professionally as a genealogist since 2004.

Rebecca’s commitment to education includes completion of the NGS Home Study Course, NIGR, ProGen Online Study Group 4, and Advanced Methodology at SLIG. She lectures and teaches about family history research. Until she moved to Mt. Airy in 2010, she was Assistant Director of the Family History Center and an Instructor in genealogy for Howard Community College, both in Columbia, Maryland.

She is now the Director of Genealogy for Reel Tributes, a company that creates films on family histories. Her professional work includes Maryland and lineage research. Currently she is focused on lecturing about, and spreading the word on, the War of 1812 Preserve the Pensions project sponsored by FGS at www.preservethepensions.org.  She can often be found at the Maryland or Pennsylvania State Archives.  She is grateful for the support of her three wonderful teenagers and very patient husband.