January 27


SLIG Academy – recap of Week 2

By Cathie

January 27, 2020

My post last week was on SLIG and the various course offerings, specifically on the course I took. I have just completed the second week which is SLIG Academy for Professionals.  The course I took was The Art of Writing Client Reports, coordinated by Angela Packer McGhie.  Other courses on offer were:

  • Public speaking from concept to delivery
  • DNA and the 21st century professional
  • Fundamentals of forensic genealogy
  • Writing and documenting for peer review
  • Project management essentials.
The Art of Writing Client Reports – attendees and some presenters


There were over 430 attendees for SLIG and about 150 enrolled in SLIG Academy.  The Client Reports course had about 25 people in it, most of whom were experienced genealogists. The presenters for this course were:

  • Angela Packer McGhie (Coordinator)
  • Dr Thomas Jones
  • Karen Stanbury
  • Catherine Desmarais
  • Nancy Peters
  • Karen Matheson
  • April Cox.


Topics over the four days included:

  • Essential elements of a research report
  • Technical writing (twenty principles)
  • Incorporating DNA evidence into client reports
  • Presenting information from documents
  • Forensic genealogy and affidavits
  • Live editing of work samples
  • Report presentation and visual elements.


These, and the other topics not listed, were provided by experienced, expert presenters, each of whom gave comprehensive insights into their particular topic.  The ones of most interest to me were those which focused on citations and report presentation as I am writing my thesis for the Society of Australian Genealogists’ Diploma in Family Historical Studies. American genealogists use the Chicago Manual of Style which is what I need to use for the thesis. The narrative style report is not common but many clients seem to prefer that so some of the professional genealogists do a standard report and a narrative which tells the story as opposed to recounting the genealogy.

On Thursday afternoon, Tom Jones live edited 4 writing samples – out of the 12 which had been submitted.  One of these was mine and I found that the process was not quite as intimidating as I thought it might be.  As Tom edited, he gave insights into his thinking but also asked the class for their feedback too.

This course certainly opened my eyes to the different ways in which client reports can be presented and what must be included as well as optional sections. The courses for SLIG Academy will not be listed until March 01 so will wait and see what is on offer before making a decision to come again.

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