Beginners' guides to genetic genealogy
From ISOGG Wiki
The following is a list of resources which are particularly appropriate for genetic genealogy beginners.
- Beginners' guide to genetic genealogy by Kelly Wheaton, 2013.
- FamilySearch guide to DNA testing
- Understanding and applying your DNA test results A series of article from the US Family Tree Magazine (includes some premium content}
- DNA – What, when, how, why – FAQs for beginners by Donna Rutherford. Donna Rutherford's Blog, 30 December 2017 (updated 4 January 2022).
- Why do DNA testing for family history if you already “know” your tree? by Diahan Southard, Lisa Louise Cooke's Genealogy Gems, 6 September 2017
- Beginning DNA for African American genealogy by Shannon Christmas, International American Museum Center for Family History, July 2017.
- Choosing your DNA test: the best DNA testing kits by Debbie Kennett. Who Do You Think You Are? Magazine, November 2020. An abbreviated and updated version of an article originally published in the magazine in May 2017 (issue 125, May 2017, pp17-23). (A UK perspective)
- The lady vanishes: DNA testing for unknown ancestor mysteries by Michelle Leonard. A guest post on the Borders Ancestry blog, 27 March 2017. (A UK perspective)
- How to track down your ancestry with DNA Anne Lise Stranden. Science Nordic, 25 February 2017. (A Norwegian perspective)
- DNA basics for a sound foundation by Judy Russell, The Legal Genealogist, 15 January 2017.
- Genetic genealogy - DNA testing and you by Elizabeth Wilson Ballard. Diggin' up Graves, 23 November 2016 (a US perspective).
- Do you have your great-great-great grandfather's nose? by Diahan Southard. FamilySearch Blog, 9 November 2016.
- Which DNA test is best for me? by Maurice Gleeson, DNA and Family Tree Research blog, 27 April 2016 (a perspective from the UK and Ireland).
- Getting started with autosomal DNA - a personal view from Jim Bartlett, Segmentology blog, 22 November 2015.
- Put the kettle on, lets sit down and talk about DNA (*for newbies only) by Donna Rutherford, 16 August 2015. An introduction to autosomal DNA testing and GedMatch.
- What types of DNA test are available? by Louise Coakley, 26 March 2015.
- Using DNA test results: the basics for genealogists by Kitty Cooper, 18 March 2015. A guide to using autosomal DNA testing for genealogy research.
- Introduction to using DNA for genealogy by Louise Coakley, 27 January 2015.
- Genetic genealogy basics by Sue Griffith, Genealogy Junkie website, last updated 30 October 2014.
- Sense about genealogical DNA testing by Debbie Kennett, Sense About Science blog, 15 March 2013
- Introduction to genetic genealogy by Steve Handy. DNA Genealogical Experiences and Tutorials blog, 21 October 2012.
- DNA testing for genealogy - Getting started Part One by CeCe Moore, Geni.com blog, 18 July 2012 (a look at Y-chromosome DNA testing).
- DNA testing for genealogy - Getting started Part Two by CeCe Moore, Geni.com blog, 25 July 2012 (a look at mitochondrial DNA testing).
- DNA testing for genealogy - Getting started Part Three by CeCe Moore, Geni.com blog, 18 July 2012 (a look at autosomal DNA testing).
- DNA testing for genealogy - Getting started Part Four by CeCe Moore, Geni.com blog, 18 July 2012 (a look at ethnicity testing).
- DNA Testing For Genealogy 101 – What Can It Do For You? Roberta Estes' series for the National Genealogical Society
- Is the answer in your genes? by Debbie Kennett, Berkshire Family Historian, September 2008 (Volume 33), pp 14-16 (an introduction to Y-DNA and mtDNA testing from a British perspective).
- DNA 101 by John Blair. The basics of DNA as it applies to Y-DNA testing.
- An introduction to DNA from the Guild of One-Name Studies A collection of articles about DNA testing and surname project administration with links to articles that are of particular relevance for beginners.
- The wonders of DNA by Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Ross Curtis. Ancestry blog, 12 June 2015. The answer to a reader's questions: "My family has been doing family history for 150 years. Do I really need a DNA test?"
- The interconnectedness of the human family by Henry Louis Gates Jr. and Ross Curtis. Ancestry blog, 8 April 2015.
- Our three basic tests Article from the Family Tree DNA Learning Center
- Are you an equal mix of mom and dad? by Leah Larkin, The DNA Geek. 7 December 2020.
- Path of Y-DNA and mtDNA (males)
- Path of Y-DNA (male line only)
- Path of mtDNA (female line only)
- X-chromosome inheritance Links to charts showing the inheritance path of the X-chromosome in both males and females
Guidelines and standards
For guidelines on DNA testing see the Genetic genealogy standards.
Mailing lists and Facebook groups
Do you have questions? Ask, read, and learn from our ISOGG DNA-NEWBIE mailing list. (You must first join ISOGG to be invited to join the DNA-NEWBIE forum.) A DNA-Newbie is anyone new to the field of genetic genealogy. See also the FAQs for the ISOGG DNA Newbie list compiled by Kitty Cooper
There is also an active Facebook group for DNA Newbies.
Videos and webinars
- Chromosomes and inheritance A selection of videos created by the Genetic Science Learning Center at the University of Utah for the Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation
- Family Tree DNA (US) webinars
- DNA 101 (for beginners) from the Ancestry Academy
- Top ten reasons to do a DNA test for family history A short presentation by Michelle Leonard for Family Tree Magazine (UK)
- Getting started in genetic genealogy Diahan Southard's presentation at Rootstech 2015.
- DNA Lectures - Who Do You Think You Are? Live Includes a number of talks aimed at beginners
- Genetic Genealogy Ireland YouTube channel Includes a number of talks aimed at beginners
- DNA microarray explained A video explaining the microarray technology that extracts genotypes from a spit sample
ISOGG Wiki articles for beginners
- Autosomal DNA
- Before You Buy
- Choosing a DNA testing company
- DNA newbie educational components
- DNA testing for adoptees
- DNA testing surprises
- Genealogical DNA test
- Genealogical DNA testing myths
- Genetic genealogy
- Genetic genealogy Q&A for beginners A guide to Y-DNA and mtDNA testing
- Genetics Glossary
- List of DNA testing companies
- Mitochondrial DNA tests
- Success stories
- Understanding genetic ancestry testing
- Y chromosome DNA tests