16 Classes about DNA Research at RootsTech 2017

January 27, 2017  - by 
16 Classes about DNA Research at RootsTech 2017

Exploring and understanding one’s DNA has quickly become an important part of genealogy research. After all, DNA can help you discover where you came from, where your relatives lived, and why your eyes are the color they are.

Because of the wide interest in using DNA for genealogical research, a number of classes will be taught on this subject over the course of the four-day RootsTech conference. We’ve compiled a list of them here. If you see a class that interests you, add it to your schedule in the official RootsTech app.

 

 

Thursday, February 9

How to Use DNA Triangulation to Confirm Ancestors

In this intermediate class, popular genealogist and DNA expert Kitty Cooper will explain DNA triangulation and demonstrate its effectiveness through various case studies. One case study will show how DNA triangulation was used to confirm descent from a specific ancestor that was possible, but not definitive in the paper trail.

Time: 11:00 a.m.
Place: Ballroom J

Family Finder, 23and Me, and AncestryDNA: An Introduction

In this beginner level class, Tim Janzen will teach you how to maximize your experience with each of the three major autosomal DNA tests available: Family Tree DNA’s Family Finder, 23andMe, and AncestryDNA. Learning the ins and outs of these important DNA tests will help genealogists know the pluses and minuses of each and how they can best be applied to personal research.

Time: 11:00 a.m.
Place: Ballroom A

DNA: The Glue That Holds Families Together

In this beginner level class, Diahan Southard will explore how she was able to use a combination of genetic and genealogical tools to connect with her own biological family. You’ll come away from this class with ideas on how to apply such methods to your own personal research.

Time: 1:30 p.m.
Place: 255D

Writing about and Documenting DNA Test Results

This class, taught by Thomas Jones, uses published case studies to focus on the interaction of DNA and documentary evidence used in establishing genealogical proof, including how to integrate both kinds of data in proof arguments—both visually and in text.

Time: 1:30 p.m.
Place: Ballroom G

My Ancestors Are in My DNA!

Angie Bush from Ancestry ProGenealogists will explore how the DNA in your cells can be followed from your ancestor to yourself. She’ll also explain how to follow ancestors through historical records and learn about the roles they played in history. You will come away with the understanding that combining the historical and scientific narrative can lead to a rich story that will help you understand science, history, and themselves in a new way.

Time: 3:00 p.m
Place: Ballroom J

From Click to DNA Connection

This lab class, taught by Diahan Southard, will help you determine what to do after completing a DNA test. How do you find your best matches? Do you need to upload to Gedmatch? With so many options, it can be difficult to know where to focus your genetic genealogy efforts. This class will help you explore different options and help you gain confidence in this area of your research.

Time: 3:00 p.m.
Place: 251E–Lab

Friday, February 10

Using Genetic Evidence in Your Family Tree

Ross Curtis from ancestrydna.com introduces you to the tools that are available through AncestryDNA to help you add DNA evidence to your family story.

Time: 11:00 a.m.
Place: 250A

Using Autosomal DNA to Extend a Lineage

Thomas Jones will explore a case study that shows how targeted autosomal-DNA testing supplemented documentary research to identify the father and grandparents of siblings born in New York State in the 1820s. Besides genealogical methods, Jones’s presentation addresses locating people to test, interpreting documentary research and DNA results, and applying the interpretations to help answer genealogical research questions.

Time: 11:00 a.m.
Place: Ballroom G

Jewish DNA: Successes and Lessons from the Journey

Marrying within a closed community, also known as endogamy, creates special challenges for the genetic genealogist and these are only beginning to be addressed by the general community. In this class, Israel Pickholtz brings a “how I did it” approach, demonstrating the successes he has had in his own Jewish families and the lessons that are applicable to all genetic genealogy. His goal is to inspire his listeners and readers to say “I can do this!”

Time: 11:00 a.m.
Place: 251A

Putting Your DNA Matches to Work

Drowning in DNA matches? This class is for you! Come and learn how to filter, sort, and search through all of your DNA cousins and find answers to real questions. You’ll learn how to use your AncestryDNA results to find the hidden pieces of truth you need to advance your research.

Time: 1:30 p.m.
Place: 250A

Identity by Descent: Using DNA to Extend the African-American Pedigree

Using illustrative examples, Shannon Christmas demonstrates how DNA analysis, when used correctly with traditional genealogy research practices, can help family historians overcome challenges unique to African-American genealogy research.

Time: 4:30 p.m.
Place: 255A

DNA: Citations, Proof Arguments, and Conclusions

Like all genealogy research, DNA research requires the same elements of genealogical writing and sourcing. In this class, Angie Bush describes DNA evidence should be cited and how proof arguments should be constructed.

Time: 4:30 p.m.
Place: 251D

DREAM: An Advanced DNA Test for Genetic Genealogy

Eran Elhaik from the University of Sheffield explains the DREAM Chip, a tool aimed to improve genetic investigations, shed light on individual’s modern and ancient ancestry, improve biogeographical inferences, detect familial relatedness, and identify biological adaptations.

Time: 4:30 p.m.
Place: 251A

Saturday, February 11

Let Your DNA Tell the Story

Your DNA, by its own nature, is one of a kind. In this class, Diahan Southard will cover all three kinds of DNA test types and discover ways you can use this unique record to tell the story of your family history. Learn how to strip down your DNA results into essential parts and learn to use this information to tell an engaging story of your past.

Time: 11:00 a.m.
Place: 155A

How to Get More from Your DNA with GEDMatch.com

In this session, Shannon Christmas explains how to mine your autosomal DNA results for genealogical gems using the most popular third-party tools for genetic genealogy.

Time: 1:30 p.m.
Place: 255D

Supercharge Your Research with DNA

Genealogy research periodically comes to a halt in the absence of records. This may happen if you are adopted or if there was a name change by an ancestor, whether it was intentional or not. In this class, Emily Aulicino will help you discover which tests can help you with your brick walls and learn how your matches could add to your information.

Time: 3:00 p.m.
Place: 150

Register for RootsTech today and further your knowledge of genetic genealogy research!

 

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  1. You left two that are on the Wednesday Innovator Summit day, for the people who are coming to that as well: At 3 pm in Ballroom J: DNA: The Glue that Holds Families Together, by Diahan Southard, and also 3 pm in Room 155A, a panel on: How will DNA continue to disrupt our industry.