Archiver > TRANSITIONAL-GENEALOGISTS-FORUM > 2008-10 > 1224771274

From: "Rev. David McDonald" <>
Subject: [TGF] About five months
Date: Thu, 23 Oct 2008 7:14:34 -0700
In-Reply-To: <22594A809E6840FE953352E397935D86@charlesb978139>

My initial certification portfolio was assembled in about five months, just enough time to obsess over every last detail of all the work I had done! <g>

Actually, it was five months because I had worked on a number of tasks before starting the clock. (Assembling a resume, outlining my academic background and listing my genealogical writings and subscriptions... doing those things meant I was making progress!) Debbie's suggestion is a good one!

Seriously, reading and evaluating the application, being sure I answered the questions (not what *I thought* the questions asked), and being sure I was thorough were enough. My biggest mental challenge was letting go of the notion that I would be able to out-think the question and dazzle the judges with my insights. As a certified friend told me, "just answer the questions."

Once I realized that such was good, sound advice, it no longer became a mental game of overthinking the tasks. "Surely, it's not that simple?" was my reaction to more than one question. But it is--the questions are straightforward, asking for forthright answers. They are not trick questions, designed to trip an applicant up. They are intended to let you show your strengths as a researcher and analyst.

I'm reminded that when a relative was in graduate school, she was marked off on the question "how many generations in the bible from Adam to Jesus?" She missed by two... because she didn't count either Adam or Jesus in the result. Compiling a certification portfolio is not like that... no one wants an applicant to get tripped up--rather, the hope is that your work will speak clearly of your effectiveness as a genealogical researcher and analyst.


Good luck in the process. You'll likely learn more than you thought, and realize you know more than you had presumed.


Rev. David McDonald, CG(sm)*

*"CG" & "Certified Genealogist" are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, and are used by authorized associates following periodic, peer-reviewed competency evaluations. Certificate No. 452, expires 19 April 2009.

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