Genealogy 101

October 27 - November 30, 2014

Register online now! Or, register by mail or fax by downloading the registration form (PDF format.)

Course Objectives and Description

Genealogy 101 is aimed at reference staff with little or no experience in genealogy, and will provide tools for assisting patrons with family history research. The goal of the class is to give students confidence and skill in assisting family history researchers.

This five-week online course for library students and reference staff provides an introduction to American genealogy reference service. The course will outline basic sources and strategies, centered on a single case study. Topics covered include the U.S. Census, vital records, immigration research, military research and a variety of other basic genealogy sources. Students will also receive instruction in reference desk strategies and tools for further professional development. The course will cover archival material, print reference tools and online sources.

The course will include:

  • Online lessons: 3-4 per week
  • One optional chat session per week
  • Several short assignments per week


Matt Rutherford is Curator of Genealogy and Local History at the Newberry Library in Chicago. Prior to becoming curator in 2009, he spent five years as the Newberry's genealogy reference librarian, answering thousands of questions on a wide range of genealogy topics. Rutherford teaches seminars to genealogists and historians on beginning genealogy, researching pre-fire Chicago, adoption searching, non-population census schedules, the history of the federal census, and using the Social Security Death Index. He is the co-author of A Bibliography of African American History at the Newberry Library (2005) and holds an MLIS degree from Dominican University.

Registration Information

Registration limit for each session: 35

Registrations for this session will no longer be accepted once the 35 student limit is reached.

Registration Fees:

  • $130 for RUSA members
  • $175 for ALA members
  • $210 for non-ALA members
  • $100 for student members and retired members

How to Register:

  • Online
  • By Fax: download, complete, and fax form (PDF format) to (312) 280-1538
  • By Mail: download, complete, and mail form (PDF format) to American Library Association, ATTN: MACS/Online CE Registration, 50 E. Huron Street, Chicago, IL 60611