Who participates in the GenProof study groups?

While our program is designed for experienced, intermediate to advanced genealogists, it—like the book—contains valuable lessons for genealogists of any skill level. It’s designed for people who want a deeper understanding of the genealogical research cycle, genealogy standards for research, writing, and documenting, and the application of the GPS to completed work.

What prior education do I need for a GenProof study group?

We don’t have pre-requisites. However, students should have some formal education in genealogical methodology and standards, so they can meaningfully engage in discussions about analysis, correlation, conflict resolution, documentation, evidence assembly, the GPS, and more.

Here are some attributes that successful students tend to share:

They regularly use the following reference books:

  • Genealogy Standards
  • Evidence Explained
  • Chicago Manual of Style

They read quality genealogy journals, such as:

  • National Genealogical Society Quarterly
  • New England Historical and Genealogical Register
  • New York Genealogical and Biographical Record
  • The American Genealogist
  • The Genealogist
  • Rhode Island Roots
  • Magazine of Virginia Genealogy
  • Mayflower Descendant

They typically have completed one or more of the following genealogical courses:

  • ProGen Study Groups
  • Boston University Genealogical Research
  • NGS American Genealogical Studies series
  • National Institute for Genealogical Studies certificate courses

They typically have attended one or more institute courses, such as:

  • Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy
  • Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh
  • Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research
  • Genealogical Institute on Federal Records

They typically have performed some research on a family or families other their own.

They typically have written up their research in some format, either for an assignment, another person, or their own files.

Would the GenProof Study Program help me prepare for certification (CG®) through the Board for Certification or for accreditation (AG®) through The International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists?

Absolutely! The program closely adheres to the content of Mastering Genealogical Proof, which we believe is the best available presentation of genealogy’s foundational concepts. 

Who are the GenProof study group mentors?

It changes with each session, based on the availability of our skilled volunteer mentors. Each is an experienced genealogist and genealogical educator. They bring a variety of perspectives, plus examples and real-life experiences that help illustrate the concepts taught in each chapter.

What do I need to do to earn a certificate of completion?

You must complete the assignment for each chapter and submit it in a timely manner. You must attend and engage in the weekly live group discussions.

What kind of time commitment should I expect?

Each session runs for eight weeks. Depending on your experience level, you should expect the independent work to take 5–10 hours per week. In addition, the weekly group discussions will last about 60–90 minutes, depending on the chapter.

How long do I have to complete each assignment?

Assignments are due twenty-four hours before your group’s scheduled live video chat, so generally you’ll have six days to complete each one. All are pre-loaded into the Basecamp website so participants can work ahead if they need to. However, since each chapter’s content builds on the previous ones, we believe you’ll get more out of them if you’re able to work them sequentially, after the group discussion for the previous chapter.

What happens at the weekly GenProof live video chats?

Mentors review the chapter’s concepts with the group and answer questions. They also prompt and guide group discussions of topics or case studies from the week’s assignments. Mentors may provide feedback on assignments to the group as a whole, or to individuals when s/he has time.

How many people are in each study group?

Groups are limited to about ten people.

What kind of feedback am I expected to give my group members on their assignments?

For most assignments, none. We do ask students to pair off and review each other’s work for one assignment.

Is internet access required?

Yes! You will need reliable internet service to access and download homework assignments, upload your completed assignment, network with your group members via the Basecamp messaging system, and join the weekly live video chat.

Do I need any software?

Yes, you must be able to submit your written assignments as a PDF or in a commonly used word processing format, such as Microsoft Word or a .docx equivalent. 

What does the GenProof Study Program cost?

Current tuition is $100.00 for the eight-week program. Participants will need to own or have easy access to Mastering Genealogical Proof and Genealogy Standards. We recommend participants also own or have easy access to Evidence Explained and Chicago Manual of Style, but they are not required.

How often do study groups form?

This depends on the availability of our wonderful volunteer mentors. At a minimum we expect to hold study groups each fall (late September start), but our goal is to also hold a spring session (late March start).

How do I join a GenProof study group?

You can follow our Facebook page to receive notifications. You can also periodically check our Eventbrite page. Once an upcoming event has been scheduled, you can follow it on Eventbrite, too.

What books do I need for a GenProof study group?

You’ll need to purchase You’ll need to purchase Mastering Genealogical Proof. It’s available at the best price through the store of the National Genealogical Society’s website. For a variety of reasons, we recommend the physical copy over the Kindle edition.

You’ll also need to own or have ready access to Genealogy Standards. We believe this is an essential reference book for every genealogist, so we strongly recommend adding it to your library. If you purchase it through Amazon, we ask that you use our affiliate link to help support the ProGen Study Groups programs: https://amzn.to/2KQaIKw

Where can I learn even more about the GenProof Study Groups?

The Program Administrator will post a recorded information video to our Facebook page whenever a new session is scheduled. You can also email your questions to us at genproofstudygroups@gmail.com.