SLCC Genealogy Program Overview

The Genealogy program is designed to prepare students to enter the field of genealogical research. The course work focuses on teaching students how to develop solid research and organizational skills, and the proper use of genealogical records and sources. In addition, students are introduced to deciphering early handwriting, organizing research, and writing client reports. The program combines both classroom and practical hands-on research experience and prepares students to earn the Accredited Genealogist credential from the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists or the Certified Genealogist from the Board for the Certification of Genealogists.

SLCC Genealogy Program Objectives

A successful student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate substantive knowledge of genealogical research practices that will enable them to do professional research and provide quality genealogical services to clientele.
  • Read, speak, and write about a wide variety of genealogical projects. Students will organize and present information orally and in writing according to professional genealogical standards. Students will gather, organize, and analyze data using technology (computer and internet), archives, and libraries.
  • Identify fundamental principles of operating major genealogical database software. Students will use the Internet effectively as an aid in conducting genealogical research.
  • Think critically as they analyze a variety of primary and secondary sources. They will learn that good genealogists use every resource and tool available, emphasizing original records created by informants with firsthand information. When original records are not available researchers will understand the fundamentals of analyzing circumstantial evidence and build a case with collateral evidence to validate their conclusions.
  • Collaborate with others in the class and the community to increase their understanding of the interrelationship between genealogy and many other fields of study, including history, economics, geography, law, politics, and religion. In order to properly interpret records, identify individuals and relationships correctly, and place families in historical context, it is important to understand the multiplicity of factors that impact them.

Industry Certification Overview

In order to be self-governing, the genealogy community opted to organize itself into two regulating bodies to protect the consumer, to meet the needs of those desiring a credential in the field, and to support continuing education in the field. It may well be due to the foresight of these two bodies and the actions undertaken to set up two private non-profit credentialing organizations, that no government agency has been necessary to regulate or license genealogists who wish to accept clients. Of course, all genealogists must also obtain the normal city or state licenses required by law of any business.

The two credentialing organizations for professional genealogists are known by the acronyms: BCG (Board for Certification of Genealogists) and ICAPGen (International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists).

NGS & The Board for Certification of Genealogists, with Laura DeGrazia, CG, past president of the Board for Certification of Genealogists

Information about the AG credentialing program offered by ICAPGen.

For more information on how to become a certified & accredited genealogist:

Board for Certification of Genealogists

International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists

Who employs genealogists?

Genealogy companies, private individuals, genealogical & historical societies, archives & libraries, family organizations, TV programs (Who Do You Think You Are?), educational institutions, genealogical conference & workshop organizers, genealogical magazine & journal publishers, law firms, government, and many more.

Who are their clients?

Private individuals, companies, historians, other genealogists, and lawyers.

What is their key focus?

Kinship determination, record acquisition, problem analysis, and accurate conclusions.

What information is shared with clients?

Research processes, evidence as found in records, evaluation of evidence, and relationship conclusions. These are provided as a written report, including images of documents found, charts created to organize families, and logs including research details.

* Information on this page was provided by CareerOneStop & ONET Online


  • Analyze research requests and identify potential sources for information
  • Collect, evaluate, and analyze research
  • Develop and maintain databases, research helps, indices
  • Digitize and compile resources
  • Give lectures, presentations of research
  • Manage time and billing
  • Market and obtain new clients
  • Participate in continuing education opportunities and conferences
  • Work with other researchers
  • Write articles, books
  • Write research summaries

Tools & Technology

Areas of Technology Used
  • Word processing software
  • Social media
  • Email
  • Web database systems
  • Information retrieval systems
  • Genealogy software
  • Photo/digital image software
  • Library/archive systems
  • Web creation software
Top Genealogy Websites Comparing Genealogy Websites


  • Writing proficiency
  • Research & planning
  • Creative problem solving
  • Analysis & evaluation
  • Technology skills
  • Knowledge of key records that provide evidence of relationships
  • Language and the ability to read the old handwriting in the country of interest
  • Marketing
  • Business management
  • Time management
  • Personal relationship and communication skills
  • Computer skills

Knowledge & Abilities

  • Good understanding of the English language - knowledge of foreign language can be a big plus
  • Computers & electronics - much of the work will be done on the computer using specific software applications
  • Good understanding of how to access historical records
  • Understanding of historical events
  • Oral Comprehension
  • Written Comprehension
  • Oral Expression
  • Written Expression
  • Analysis
  • Information Ordering

General Information

Credentialing Organizations Professional Organizations Other Organizations
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Myers-Briggs Type Indicator & Strong Interest Inventory assessment

Anyone interested in taking the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator & Strong Interest Inventory assessment for $40, may receive one-on-one interpretation time with an SLCC Academic and Career Services Advisor. Click this link to take the fee-based assessment and follow step-by-step instructions.