Saturday, November 8, 2014
Understanding Sources on FamilySearch Family Tree
One of the major challenges of implementing the relatively new FamilySearch.org Family Tree is the lack of source citations for most of the entries. This is not a trivial issue since the integrity of the Family Tree depends on the reliability of the entries for each family. One wrongly selected individual can create a whole pedigree of unrelated people. Many users make the invalid assumption that the information in the Family Tree is "correct." Without sources substantiating each of the entries, there is absolutely no assurance to support an assumption of correctness.
For this and other reasons, adding sources to each entry in the Family Tree is a vital part of creating a valid and a record worthy of all acceptation. See Doctrine and Covenants 128:24. In the FamilySearch.org Learning Center, there is a major resource for both reference and instruction called the Family Tree Training Lessons. The image above illustrates how the written portion of these lessons can help to understand some of the reasons behind the program and details about its operation and functions.
This lesson, entitled Source Specifications, answers most of the common questions about adding sources to the Family Tree. The entire process of sourcing the entries in Family Tree is explained in 15 short lessons. Here is a screen shot showing the list of the available lessons on the Level One of the Family Tree Curriculum:
Taking the short time necessary to review and study the written materials for each of these lessons is an excellent way to gain competency in adding sources to Family Tree. If you are involved in teach about Family Tree, the lessons each provide a valuable handout for use in your classes.