Courses

Courses in the Honneyman Room

NIFHS – Honneyman Room – venue for courses

The North of Ireland Family History Society (NIFHS) runs courses on a variety of topics for Members and the public.  The courses are presented in the Honneyman Room of the Society’s Research Centre in Newtownabbey but can be presented elsewhere. A programme of courses has been prepared and is listed below.  They are organised by the Society’s Education & Development Officer, who should be contacted on Education@nifhs.org if you have any queries about the courses.


Please note extra courses in April and May.

Help from a Member.

Help from a Member.

The courses for Spring 2017 begin on the following dates:

Click on a course name for details.


“Family Finder” Saturdays

Course Tutor
Martin McDowell
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
3 sessions – Saturdays 4th February, 11th February, 18th February – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £15 – non-members £24 – payable at the first session.
Subject
This 3 session course is designed for those who have already taken Family Tree DNA’s Family Finder Test and have received their results.  You will learn how to use the tools on their website to further your genealogical research and discover what steps you can take to confirm relationships with your cousins.  The course also covers how Family Finder can be used to verify your research and how the unique X chromosome can help to confirm a match. If you have a laptop, bring it, along with your log-on details to allow for practical learning.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Family Finder” Wednesdays

Course Tutor
Martin McDowell
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
3 sessions – Wednesdays 15th February, 22nd February and 1st March – 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Cost
Members £15 – non-members £24 – payable at the first session.
Subject
This 3 session course is designed for those who have already taken Family Tree DNA’s Family Finder Test and have received their results.  You will learn how to use the tools on their website to further your genealogical research and discover what steps you can take to confirm relationships with your cousins.  The course also covers how Family Finder can be used to verify your research and how the unique X chromosome can help to confirm a match. If you have a laptop, bring it, along with your log-on details to allow for practical learning.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Photo Restoration for Beginners”

Course Tutor
Stuart Patrick
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Monday 20th February – 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
Have you any old photos in the attic that have seen better days?  This course will serve as an introduction to touching-up and restoring old family portraits and other photos that you have unearthed as part of your family history.  It will demonstrate some of the techniques involved  in repairing creases and sharpening up images using photo software.  No prior experience required!
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Using Newspapers for Family History Research” 

Course Tutor
Michael McKeag
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Tuesday 21st February – 10 a.m. to 12 noon
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
Newspapers provide a daily record of life and people, not just in the town of publication but also in the wider world of the county, the country and the globe.  Until recently, scouring old newspapers page by page was hardly practical but now that so many are online and have been indexed, albeit in a hit or miss fashion, it is a simple matter to locate articles about people, places or incidents and to use these to flesh out the lives of our ancestors, not only by discovering forgotten stories but also by gaining a better understanding of the context in which they lived their lives.  The course covers what can be found and where.
After the session, lunch (not included) will be available in the café, after which the Research Centre will be open for you to do background research on your own family.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Family Finder” Tuesdays

Course Tutor
Martin McDowell
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
3 sessions – Tuesdays 21st February, 7th March and 14th March – 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Cost
Members £15 – non-members £24 – payable at the first session.
Subject
This 3 session course is designed for those who have already taken Family Tree DNA’s Family Finder Test and have received their results.  You will learn how to use the tools on their website to further your genealogical research and discover what steps you can take to confirm relationships with your cousins.  The course also covers how Family Finder can be used to verify your research and how the unique X chromosome can help to confirm a match. If you have a laptop, bring it, along with your log-on details to allow for practical learning.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Technology for Genealogy”

Course Tutor
Maeve Rogan
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Tuesday 28th February – 1.30 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
Technology is a useful tool for genealogy.  From Evernote to Twitter, and from Facebook to YouTube, there is a lot out there in social media and on the internet.  Find out about a range of tools to help you research and organise your family history.  Learn about how Facebook can be a place to discuss your ancestors, share photos and gain information.  Discover genealogy blogs, tips and videos and keep up-to-date with new developments.  This class will give you plenty of ideas about how to use technology to help you in your family history research.  There will be a half hour break during this class for research or coffee.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Land Records” 

Course Tutors
Brian O’Hara & Ann Robinson
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
2 sessions – Tuesday 7th March – 10 a.m. to 12 noon & 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Cost
Members £12 – non-members £18 – payable at the session.
Subject
This course covers sources for finding information linking people with places.  It will include taxation, tithe applotments, Griffith’s valuation (and revision) records, ownership & tenancy, Registry of Deeds, wills and landed estate records.  There will be an emphasis on the importance of maps including collections held at NIFHS, PRONI and online.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Dublin Archives” 

Course Tutor
Charlotte Murtagh
Where
Randal Gill Library, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Wednesday 8th March – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. 
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
This  course addresses what information is available in Dublin and where to find it – at the  General Register Office,  National Archives,  National Library,  Dublin City Archives and other repositories.  If there is interest a subsequent visit to Dublin will be arranged.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Starting your Genealogy – Beginner’s Course” 

Course Tutor
Rosemary Sibbett
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
3 sessions – Thursdays 9th March, 16th March, 23rd March – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £15 – non-members £24 – payable at the first session.
Subject
Starting off your family history can be exciting but also is sometimes daunting.  Where should you be looking for information?  How do you organise your research?  What are the first steps you should be taking?  This course aims to give you the confidence and the necessary knowledge to allow you to make progress.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Emigration to Australia and New Zealand” 

Course Tutor
Michael McKeag
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Tuesday 14th March – 10 a.m. to 12 noon.
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
Organised British and Irish emigration to these countries took place in several waves.  It began with the establishment of penal colonies from 1788 in the colony of New South Wales and, in 1826, in the colony of Western Australia.  It was followed by the establishment in 1836 of the first free colony of South Australia and in 1839 of the colony of New Zealand.  The gold rushes of the 1850s in Australia and 1860s in New Zealand boosted the populations considerably.  In due course both countries offered assisted passage schemes to overcome labour shortages.  The course covers the history of emigration with pointers to useful sources of records and descriptions of the experiences of emigrants.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Family History using PowerPoint” 

Course Tutor
Sandra Ardis
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Tuesday 14th March – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
PowerPoint is much more than a presentation tool and can be used tell the story of an individual or family.  It helps organise your information and photos in a way which you can easily share with family and friends.  Points to be covered: creating a presentation/book; planning; inserting text and images; adding sound.  Bring a laptop if you wish.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Using Gedmatch” March

Course Tutor
Martin McDowell
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Saturday 18th March – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
Gedmatch is a website where people can compare their DNA results no matter which company they tested with.  This course looks at what Gedmatch has to offer – learn how to use some of the tools, discover their gedcom section, try ancestor reconstruction and interact in the forums.  If you want to take your DNA research further, this is the course for you!
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.
This course is also available in April.

“Valuation Records” 

Course Tutor
Anne Johnston
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
2 sessions – Tuesday 21st March – 10 a.m. to 12 noon & 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.
Cost
Members £12 – non-members £18 – payable at the session.
Subject
This is a 2 part course – the morning session covers Griffith’s Valuation and the afternoon class covers the Valuation Revision Books.  There will be an opportunity to do your own research, so bring your laptops and some relevant information from your own family history.
Part 1 – The Primary Valuation of Ireland (better known as Griffith’s Valuation) is one of the most important resources for family historians researching in mid 19th century Ireland.  In the absence of census records for the period, Griffith’s Valuation helps you to discover ancestors who rented or owned properties in Ireland between 1847 and 1864.
Part 2 – The Valuation Revision Books are an underused resource for family historians.  After Griffith’s Valuation, properties were valued annually from 1864 until about 1933.  The Revision Books can help you to follow your family’s journey during often turbulent times in Irish history by establishing significant dates in family history such as dates of death, sale of property or migration and provide a socio-economic context to their lives.
Lunch (not included) will be available in the café.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Breaking through Brickwalls” 

Course Tutor
Martin McDowell
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
2 sessions – Wednesdays 22nd March, 29th March – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £12 – non-members £18 – payable at the first session.
Subject
Have you reached a brickwall in your research?  With so many new records now being made available online for the first time it may just be possible to get that bit further.  This course will provide case studies to show what is possible and provide useful information on sources and methods of research.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Researching Military Ancestors” 

Course Tutor
Alan Rosborough
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
2 sessions – Saturdays 25th March, 1st April – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £12 – non-members £18 – payable at the first session.
Subject
Between the years of 1914-1918, approximately 210,000 Irishmen served with the British Army in what was to become known as The Great War.  Many more Irishmen from the provinces of Ulster, Munster, Leinster and Connaught served with other armies such as the Canadians, or ANZACs from New Zealand and Australia.  Many families living in rural farms and urban villages, towns and cities throughout Ireland had the dreaded visit from the telegram boy, delivering the dreaded news that their father, brother or son was dead or at least missing in action.  Of those men who did return, their lives were affected for ever, as they lived with the nightmares of what they experienced while serving.  There are very few families in Ireland who were not affected by the War and, as we commemorate the centenary years, more and more people are wishing to research their ancestors, relatives, or even a group of men from a Church or village.
These short workshops will suggest where to look for clues, to get your research started and where to turn to for assistance from some of the ever growing sources of websites and books to aid you in your research.  Come along and bring your family artefacts, War Medals and memorabilia from the Great War and you never know what you might discover.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Family Tree Maker: Basics and Benefits”

Course Tutor
Kathleen Morrison
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Tuesday 28th March – 10 a.m. to 12 noon
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
A  beginners’ class on the basics and benefits of using Family Tree Maker software.  Some of the points that will be looked at are installing photographs, how to create a timeline, preparation of reports.  We will also look at different ways to print out charts and family tree layouts.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Using Gedmatch” April

Course Tutor
Martin McDowell
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Saturday 29th April – 2 p.m. to 4 p.m.
Cost
Members £7 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
Gedmatch is a website where people can compare their DNA results no matter which company they tested with.  This course looks at what Gedmatch has to offer – learn how to use some of the tools, discover their gedcom section, try ancestor reconstruction and interact in the forums.  If you want to take your DNA research further, this is the course for you!
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.
This course is also offered in March.

“Family Finder” May

Course Tutor
Martin McDowell
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
3 sessions – Tuesdays 2nd May, 9th May and 23rd May – 7 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Cost
Members £15 – non-members £24 – payable at the first session.
Subject
This 3 session course is designed for those who have already taken Family Tree DNA’s Family Finder Test and have received their results.  You will learn how to use the tools on their website to further your genealogical research and discover what steps you can take to confirm relationships with your cousins.  The course also covers how Family Finder can be used to verify your research and how the unique X chromosome can help to confirm a match. If you have a laptop, bring it, along with your log-on details to allow for practical learning.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

“Land Records”  – This is the half of the 7th March course that was postponed due to illness.

Course Tutors
Brian O’Hara
Where
Honneyman Room, NIFHS Research Centre, Unit C4, Valley Business Centre, 67 Church Road, Newtownabbey, Co. Antrim, BT36 7LS.
When
1 session – Tuesday 16th May – 10 a.m. to 12 noon 
Cost
Members £6 – non-members £10 – payable at the session.
Subject
This course covers sources for finding information linking people with places.  It will include taxation, tithe applotments, Griffith’s valuation (and revision) records, ownership & tenancy, Registry of Deeds, wills and landed estate records.
To enrol for this course, email Education@nifhs.org giving your name, membership number (if any) and the course name and date(s) wanted.

 


Book your place now

To book your place on a Course email Education@nifhs.org.
Please give your

  • Full Name
  • Email Address
  • Membership Number (if any)
  • Course Title
  • Course Date

 These courses are open to members of the Society and non-members.