•    •  Tracking Your Research Efforts
Getting Started | Tracking Your Research Efforts
15.1 Tracking Your Research Efforts

Can you recall all of the Internet databases you’ve used in your research? What books or journals you have researched? If you’re like the majority of us, you have wasted hours replicating our own research.

Research Logs

It is essential to keep track of the resources you examine in your family history research, even if they offer nothing of significance. A study diary or research calendar can assist you in organising your findings, deciding on future actions, and remove unnecessary research. You can organise your record by surname, individual, geographic region, or any manner you find most efficient. Each log often includes space for the date you searched the source, the source’s address, bibliographic information for the source, and a tiny area for remarks and/or findings.

Correspondence Logs

A correspondence log keeps track of any requests you’ve written or made and the responses you’ve received. It usually has a section at the top for the surname and space to record information for each request concerning that surname.

You don’t need anything fancy to keep track of your research request, but make a note of the date sent, to whom it was written, and a description of your request. Then, after you receive the response, make a note of the date the response was received as well as the findings (positive or negative). It may appear simple to keep track of when you are just starting out but given that responses to genealogical questions can take anywhere from a week to six months, you will most likely lose track over time.