Help:Research guides


Frequently asked questions

What is a research guide?

  • A research guide is an article that helps genealogists learn about doing research in unfamiliar places or with unfamiliar sources.
  • Research guides are group projects written collaboratively by WeRelate users and administrators for use by the entire community.
  • WeRelate has asked its users to contribute in an attempt to write research guides for each US state and the foreign nations of genealogical interest.

What are the Features of a Research Guide?

  • Get tips on conducting research in the birth area of an ancestor
  • Learn more about the sources available to you in your research
  • Share your knowledge with others by writing your own articles
  • Collaborate with others to completely document a research technique

How can I find a research guide?

  • You can search for a Research Guide by clicking the Search menu in the upper left menu bar and select Articles, then fill in the appropriate fields and click Search.
  • Alternatively, you can select Browse Pages from the "Admin" menu in the upper right corner of the screen
  • If you are looking for research guidance for a particular place, check out the associated "Place:" page
  • Or... you can go to Category:Research_guides for a complete list.

How can I contribute?

  • Search for the research guide for your state (or country) of residence and any other states (or countries) in which you have research experience
  • If the guides have already been created, add any additional information you might have to the article
  • If it has not yet been created, go ahead and create it
    • Even if you think you don't have enough information, enter what you do know, and let other users add the rest

How do I create a research guide?

First search to see if one already exists for what you want. Review Category:Research_guides.
  • If your research guide information is specific to a locality, first check the corresponding place page. If the page is not already too full(*) and/or the information you want to add not too long, create a new section on the Place page (with a == Header ==) and add your information there. If there is not yet a Category:Research_guides on the Place page, please add [[Category:Research guides]] to the bottom of the page.
  • Some Place pages are quite full with genealogically-relevant information OR the amount of Research Guide information you want to add is too long. In this case, create a link on the Place page to a separate article (see above for how to create a separate Research Guide page). In this case, do NOT add [[Category:Research guides]] to the bottom of the Place page.
(*)If the content on the page is predominantly Wikipedia content that is not genealogically relevant, replace that content with an external link to the wikipedia page, then add your research guide information to a new section on that page. Again, be sure to add [[Category:Research guides]] to the bottom of the page if it's not already there. See Help:Place_pages#What_if_the_place_page_already_has_data_from_Wikipedia_that_I_don.27t_think_is_pertinent_for_genealogy_purposes.3F this section of Help:Place pages for more specific information about removing or replacing Wikipedia content on Place pages.
To create a new research page:
  • Click on the Add menu in the upper left menu bar and select "Articles"
    • Read "How to Title Articles" below the Title box (Also see Titles for research guides, below)
    • In the Title box, enter the desired title of the research guide
    • When you are finished, click on "Add Page"
  • When the new page comes up, click Edit in the left sidebar
    • Fill in the appropriate Surnames, Places and Year Range in the boxes provided
    • The Text box is where you enter your information
      • You can also write an article on your own word processor and paste it into the text box
        • You may need to change some of the formatting to make it look right on the finished WeRelate page
      • Please add this category link at the end of your article: [[Category:Research guides]]
        • This will help researchers find your article

What format should I follow for research guides?

  • We aren't really concerned about that right now
  • For now, just write what you know, doing your best to follow typical WeRelate conventions
  • The most important thing is making the information available
  • As the research guides grow over time, a standard format will be applied

I've seen an excellent research guide elsewhere on the web - Can I just copy it over?

  • Because of copyright concerns, your best bet, if the other site does not require registration, would be to insert a link to that research guide on the WeRelate research guide
  • WeRelate users could easily have access to that guide and we wouldn't have to worry about copyright violations
  • Please do not post copyrighted material on WeRelate

General information

Titles for research guides

  • Research Guides are articles, and therefore, do not belong to a namespace
  • Instead, they are identified solely by a unique page name
  • A Research Guide title should be brief and specific, containing the words "research guide"
  • A state or country Research Guide should be simply the place name, followed by research guide
  • For more information, see Help:Page titles.

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