LMentary Blog

IHGS Higher Certificate Exam - Completion

After twenty-five months, forty-eight sessions, fifty practical tasks, and not to mention numerous question-and-answer sessions, a mid-term exam and two Christmas specials, the Delving Deeper Group emerged dog-tired and bleary-eyed from the IHGS Higher Certificate in Genealogy examination last Saturday.

It all began in May 2011 - a gentle start! A session on family records soon followed by the GRO and Census Returns before breaking for summer. Surprisingly they all returned in September, fresh and raring to go!   We progressed into parish registers, drop-line pedigrees and the parish chest. Palaeography was drip-fed to them; nice and easy to start with, gaining their trust before whacking them with a 16th century will (or two). My Christmas present to them! 

2012 began with my favourite topic, military records, followed by nonconformity, education and the professions. My parting gesture, as we broke for summer, was to hand out the heraldry assignments. You would easily spot the Delving Deeper student on the beach that year. Whilst 'normal' holidaymakers were basking in the sunshine the Delving Deeper quartet would be deeply engrossed in blazoning, tricking and marshallling exercises. On our first meeting after the school hols I felt guilty that I was the only one with a suntan.

In Year 2 it all got a little serious. The IHGS Higher Certificate examination was on the horizon and it was time to focus the mind. So off they went to the Hampshire and West Sussex archives looking at maps, title deeds, manorial records, hearth tax returns, convicts, juicy newspaper stories and the ecclesiastical court records. We had time to acquaint ourselves with the Scots, Irish and Welsh records before getting down to some serious revision. I say we, in reality I just handed out the question papers.

A thick brown package, containing an assortment of documents, dropped through my letterbox in the middle of May heralding the arrival of the Higher Certificate examination paper 2 (part 1). 'Put your social life on hold for three weeks' I told them, 'it's time to draw me a pedigree.' And draw me a pedigree they did. Their reward was to be locked away in a classroom to endure a further SIX hours of written examinations; two bouts of three hours!

They may have emerged dog-tired and bleary-eyed from the six-hour marathon but at least they still had their sense of humour. Hopefully they will still be smiling on the 27th July when we all gather in Canterbury for the annual IHGS Awards Day.     
                 
                

       

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Military Histories

Read some of the fascinating tales I have stumbled across whilst conducting research using military records. Fact is indeed often stranger than fiction.

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I offer a two-year family history course that prepares you for the Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies (IHGS) Higher Certificate Examination. Find out more.

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