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From: Patricia <>
Subject: Re: [APG] Genealogy Definitions - genealogist
Date: Tue, 08 Jan 2008 09:50:12 -0800
References: <0c9e01c85189$3f121c20$2101a8c0@CEB>
In-Reply-To: <0c9e01c85189$3f121c20$2101a8c0@CEB>


At 03:58 PM 1/7/2008, wrote:
>A genealogist is one who studies the past and present of individual families
>and the kinship links among those families. Practitioners of genealogy may
>focus entirely on their own family, or they may pursue genealogy as either a
>profession or a scholarly field.
>
>A professional genealogist is one who earns part or all of their livelihood
>from the practice of some aspect of genealogy.

I've been pondering over the description of "genealogist" since this
topic first appeared on the list. To tell the truth, the passive
description of a genealogist on the compiled list leaves me pretty
flat. As a genealogist for the last 20 years and as one who
completed the rigorous Certificate Program in Genealogy and Family
History at the University of Washington, that's still the only
category of the compiled definitions into which possibly the majority
of us would fit. I read that description and can't help but think,
"Oh my gosh, is that really all I've been doing for the last 20
years??" I would just never define it in such simplistic terms.
Since all of the other descriptions define and differentiate somewhat
in terms of "what they do" in order to explain "what they are", I
believe that the simple description of a "genealogist" should also
contain a little of that language. That is the core of what a basic
genealogist is and does.

I'd like to offer a revised description for "genealogist":

"A genealogist is one who studies the past and present of individual
families and the kinship links among those families through research
of source materials, record interpretation, research methodology,
evidence analysis, kinship determination, and genealogical writing.
They may or may not use DNA analysis and research to enhance
knowledge about kinship ties. Practitioners of genealogy may focus
entirely on their own family, or they may pursue genealogy as either
a profession or a scholarly field."

I'd like to also suggest that the words "above average" be removed
from the "certified genealogist" description, so that sentence simply
reads, "The credential identifies the holder as one who has achieved
proficiency in ..."


Patricia Summers-Smith
http://rootstracker.com



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