Sunday, March 17, 2013

ANNOUNCING: MGP Study Group - Hangouts on Air

Mastering Genealogical Proof (MGP) will be the subject of a 10-session Hangout On Air (HOA) starting in June 2013. This post provides basic information about ordering the book, attending each Hangout on Air, and posting comments about chapter assignments. Also note a call for panelists willing to take an active roll in the  development of this series.

Making the commitment to participate in a MGP Study Group is different from other nationally-ranked online genealogy study groups in that:

1. The answers are found in the book.
2. A small group of participants will be JOINing the live Hangout on Air as panelists.
3. A large group of participants will be VIEWing the live Hangout On Air via YouTube.
4. The HOAs will be recorded, so others may WATCH the Hangout on Air via YouTube later.
5. COMMENTS during the live HOA and when working through each week's assignments will be posted by in DearMYRTLE's G+ Online Genealogy Community under a stream for each week's assignment.
6. The sessions in this initial series will be completed on a near-weekly basis.

BASICALLY participants "major" in the study of Mastering Genealogical Proof for the duration of this series. We're going to eat, sleep and breathe this project until we get it down pat. There are some revolutionary thoughts in this book that will be a paradigm shift for even some experienced researchers. This pilot group will:

  • Set the pace for future MGP Study Groups.
  • Establish additional questions to discuss during each session.
  • Provide feedback to the moderator about the mechanics of the series.
  • Provide feedback to the author.


The National Genealogical Society is publishing Mastering Genealogical Proof by Thomas Jones, Ph. D., CG, CGL, FASG, FUGA, FNGS. The anticipated shipping date is 20 May 2013 and sales are accepted now at:

The MGP Study Group #1 meets Sunday evenings as follows:

June 2, 2013 - ORIENTATION
June 9, 2013 - Break for IGHR, but practice attending HOAs and posting comments.
June 16, 2013 - Chapter 1 Genealogy’s Standard of Proof
June 23, 2013 - Chapter 2  Concepts Fundamental to the GPS
June 30, 2013 - Chapter 3 GPS Element 1: Thorough Research
July 7, 2013 - Break for NIGR
July 14, 2013 - Chapter 4 GPS Element 2: Source Citations
July 21, 2013 - Chapter 5 GPS Element 3: Analysis and Correlation
July 28, 2013 - Break for GRIP
August 4, 2013 - Chapter 6 GPS Element 4: Resolving Conflicts and Assembling Evidence
August 11, 2013 - Chapter 7 GPS Element 5: The Written Conclusion
August 18, 2013 - Break for FGS
August 25, 2013 - Chapter 8 Using the GPS
Sept 1, 2013 - Chapter 9 Conclusion

8pm Eastern US (New York)
7pm Central US (Chicago)
6pm Mountain US (Denver, Salt Lake City)
6pm Pacific US (Los Angeles)

If you need a time zone converter, there is a great one located here:

To accommodate a large group, we are using the Google Hangout On Air platform, originating at DearMYRTLE's Genealogy Community on Google+ located here:

Participants must have a Google+ account, which is as simple as activating it with a Gmail account. Joining DearMYRTLE's Genealogy Community is free, but we do have to "approve" your request to join.

All comments and links to assignments will be posted in the community. Participants may use a blog or a public Google document to submit each assignment.

Unlike a webinar, the link for a G+ Hangout on Air isn't created until just before the event is to go live. I'll provide the links in the community for JOINing and VIEWing a few minutes prior to the start of the HOA broadcast.

For more info about attending a DearMYRTLE Hangout on air, see Making Sense of Google + HOAs.

Closed-captioning is a feature of the live HOAs and recorded HOAs, through a service provided by Google. I'd say the speech recognition is about 90% accurate.

JOINers will play a crucial role in this Study Group as they appear as "panelists" across the bottom of the HOA screen, and will have control over their audio and video feed to the group. If you wish to be considered for a position on the panel, please let Ol' Myrt know via a comment to this post. Participants must be ready to:
  • Ensure a quality computer setup including reliable high-speed Internet access, near HD quality web cam and high-quality sound system. (Perhaps a headset?)
  • Commit to attend all scheduled sessions, logging in 30 minutes before the scheduled start of the Hangout on Air. (VIEWers will begin to identify with you.)
  • Sit in a quiet space, away from all distractions for the duration of the HOA.
  • Complete all workbook assignments by Tuesday prior to the scheduled chapter discussion.
  • Review homework submitted by other panelists, providing feedback and comments.
  • Submit 2 questions for the panel to discuss during each HOA in advance to the moderator.
  • Factor-in time for all other panelists to respond and govern one's self accordingly.
  • Avoid self-promotion of products or services, except when providing links to one's blog where assignments are posted. (It isn't necessary to have a blog to participate as a panelist, but do mention the URL if you have one in your application.)
  • Reflect a kindly attitude, eager for peer review of homework assignments.
  • Have fun learning from Dr. Jones' Mastering Genealogical Proof, your fellow panelists and those commenting in the DearMYRTLE Genealogy Community on Google+.

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt     :)
Your friend in genealogy.

G+ DearMYRTLE Community
Twitter: @DearMYRTLE
Second Life: Clarise Beaumont


  1. I ordered my book. I am so excited to learn with you! I have been judging the local genealogy department at the county fair and I look for this ti be a big help

  2. Would love to be a panelist on this, Myrt. I'll have to wait until closer to the day to commit though -- still trying to finish the NGS-HSC - and waiting to hear about my ProGen Study Group. If I get done with the former and haven't started the latter, I should be able to do it.

    In any case, I will still be participating in the group - it's just a matter of whether I'll be talking or typing :)

  3. Myrt I would like to consider being a panelist if I can figure out how to use my headset I finally purchased. I do live out in the boonies so I am not sure that my connection is good enough. I am able to listen now. so I may have to be content with participating and typing. I am so excited for this.

  4. My copy of the book has already been ordered and I am interested in becoming a panelist. However, I will not be able to confirm commitment in May.

  5. Dear Myrt
    Thank you for creating this wonderful educational exchange!
    I would love to have the priveledge of being a learner..a listener...a viewer. How best can I "secure a spot" ?
    Janine Hakim

    1. Anyone wishing to be a panelist should send an email and I'll put your name in the hopper.

      Everyone wishing to view the 10-session Study Group may do so on the scheduled dates by watching the live "feed" of the G+ Hangout on Air.

  6. I just ordered my book this morning, and will be back from my trip home to NH in time. Now if our move goes smoothly and I have internet, I will follow along live. If not, will have to watch the first one or so after the fact. Very excited you are doing this!

  7. I received my book today - am excited to learn with you. Jane

  8. Looking forward to catching up with the discussions of this group. Unfortunately because of the time difference in the UK I will be unable to participate in the live comments but will add any comments pertinent to the discussion at the google+ posting.

  9. It would be great if one or two groups could be scheduled for European time.
    Kathryn in France