Online courses

My great grandfather
My great grandfather


As regular readers of my blog know, I have taken part in a few online courses since I retired.

The first one was run by the University of Tasmania and was titled Introduction to Family History. As you can tell I love genealogy and tracing my family tree. I knew the co-ordinator of the course and thought I might learn some new things about researching correctly especially referencing, citations and new sources or repositories to use. I created a page on my blog with all the sources mentioned by students in the group I was part of during this course.

I have since been asked to help moderate the same course – both times with beginner groups. This might be because I tend to enjoy writing step by step instructions which I know a lot of beginners to both online learning and family history need during the course. It can be tough learning the set up at a University as well as using a computer efficiently and also doing the reading and listening involved in the actual family history side of the course.

I am now thinking I might need to look at my sources page from this course and split it further into smaller sections.

I then took part in a course with Future Learn. Monash University was running a course on World War I – looking at stories of participants through videos created by students at the University. To see my posts on this course, check out the category linked here. I created one post just listing links of places to visit when researching a World War I soldier or nurse.

I am presently enrolled in another course at the University of Tasmania where they are putting together a Diploma of Family History8 topics being offered. I didn’t complete the Writing your Family History course but intend to do it at some future time.

But I am doing the Convict Ancestors course. With 8 convicts in the family so far and, luckily, all in Tasmania I felt this was a great chance to find out more places to search for records on my convicts. I have researched well most of their lives in Tasmania – at least the birth, death marriage side of their families, but would love to find out more about their life pre-transportation to VDL. I will be putting together some resource pages on convicts as well throughout this course.

Part of the course is transcribing documents and writing a story about your convict using the software at Our Family Past. I have decided to use one of my convicts I know little about – even her name might be wrong as she was convicted under another name as well. Isabella WATKINS(ON) who was the wife of Francis COLGRAVE in Evandale.

Readers: Have you decided yet who you will be researching? Why choose that person?

3 thoughts on “Online courses

  1. I have two convicts that I am aware of in my tree, who found each other in VDL and once he was a free man they married. In my Intro to Family History course I used Robert BRIGHT (male convict) as my research study, and even though I still have some unanswered questions I think I will go with his wife for this course, Mary Ann GOULDING (aka Mary Ann CROCKER) because there seems to be a lot more to her story than first appears!! Potentially she had been tried before and got off….so when she was arrested this time she used her mother’s maiden name….. I need to get to the bottom of this…. because on her transportation papers it also states she was 13! The Plot Thickens….

  2. Hi Sue, it has been lovely to get to know you through UTAS first as my moderator and now as a fellow student. As I have not been able to find a convict in my past I have borrowed a Charles FENTON who was transported in 1822 on the Arab, so lets see how we go.

  3. There is a convict by the name of George WOOD aged 17 who arrived VDL on the John Barry in August 1834…I have a copy of his VDL convict record…He was not all that well behaved…..It also says his father (Thomas) was transported eleven years earlier and is in Sydney….Do not know if the father was transported to VDL and then later to Sydney…..Young George received free cert No 665 in 1843….
    I have a George WOOD a Constable aged 37 who married at Longford November 1854..He and wife moved to Victoria where they had three daughters..Last one in 1864….
    George then disappears……..
    There is a George WOOD aged 49 yrs who drowned in Sydney harbour Dec 1866…Death cert to hand is no help…
    My dilemma is, are these three persons the same George WOOD…That is the question????
    Wife remarries in NZ in 1871 as widow….Her parents and siblings moved there 1858 from VDL…

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