We provide a range of courses aimed at different levels of user expertise.


Archaeological Data Service, York, UK19 May 2014introCompleted
British Library, London, UK21 May 2014introCompleted
Ecole Pratique des Hautes Etudes, Paris, France23 May 20141 +1Completed
King's College, London6 May 2015intro + 1/2 dayCompleted
University of Athens16 & 17 May 2016intro + masterclasscontact kgardika@arch.uoa.grCompleted

Course Details

To register your general interest, please complete the Contact Form. Please register for specific workshops through the EventBrite form for that workshop.


These will be two-hour presentations introducing potential users to the Heurist platform. These presentation are offered periodically or by arrangement.


These will be one day hands-on workshops, covering the fundamentals of Heurist as well as providing new users with the opportunity to start building their own databases. Masterclasses are generally followed by a second day ‘clinic’ session where we will help participants with setting up or customising a specific project.

Target Audience

Researchers who wish to create well-structured, flexible databases for personal use or for sharing within a small research group. The masterclass will also be of use to eResearch analysts and others who are called on to help researchers create databases.

Technical Level

The only demanding part of the class is writing custom report formats, which requires some basic HTML (simple tags such as bold, italics, break, horizontal rule, and a simple table); most people should have no trouble with these even if they have never written HTML.

A set of guide notes will be supplied so that you can annotate them as we go along and revisit anything which is not clear at a later date. Timings are approximate and will be adapted to the group as required. Time will be available after the workshop, and the following day, for discussion of specific projects.


Introduction — 1 hour

General overview of Heurist capabilities, workflow and documentation resources. We will give you a quick overview of the system by demonstrating the workflow from creation of a new database, through the import of structure and data, searching and visualising, to publishing on the web.

Database Creation — 1 hour

Creation of a database of people with life history events and relationships to other people, places and events. You will import and then modify standard templates for people, places, and events, and set up links between entities. At the end of this section you should have a clear idea of how to set up and configure a new database.

Entering Data — 30 minutes

In order to get an idea of the data entry/editing functions, we will run through adding a record, and you will then enter a couple of people into the database you have just created, along with events in their life and the places those events took place. We will also bookmark a couple of web pages and link these to people.

Search, Mapping and Output — 1 hour

Using a supplied, richly-linked database we will explore the ways the database can be searched and visualised through maps, timelines and faceted searches. You will learn to save searches for rapid navigation and for publication of selected data. We will review available standard output formats, including archival export, and briefly cover Heurist-independent access to the data through SQL queries to the underlying MySQL database.

Custom Output Format — 1 hour

We will look at a number of custom report formats and their use to create files for input to other programs or formatted output embedded in a web site. You will then create your own custom format.

Data Structures and Data Preparation — 1.5 hours

We will take a look at some well-structured databases and discuss best practice for breaking your data down into appropriate entities and fields. We will do a couple of breakout group paper-based exercises to model a complex project and translate it into a Heurist design.

We will then look at ways of preparing bulk data using a spreadsheet or text editor, and cover potential pitfalls in data preparation. We will briefly touch on data cleaning with Open Refine and ways of organising legacy data for import. You will import a supplied CSV file into your database.

Wrap-up — 30 minutes

An overview of future developments in Heurist. Feedback on any difficulties you encountered and on any new features you would like to see incorporated. Further discussion and any specific issues.


After the workshop, and on the following day, the instructor will normally be available for advice and assistance in setting up specific projects.


These are geared towards existing Heurist users who wish to explore some specific aspects of the system. These classes are offered by arrangement and are tailored to individual users’ expectations and requirements. Workshops and masterclasses are generally followed by a second day ‘clinic’ session where we will help participants with setting up or customising a specific project.

Heurist Registration

Registration allows creation of Heurst databases and subscribes you to occasional news updates (single-click to unsubscribe).

We will not share your email information with any third party.

Thank you for registering. We have sent you an email, allowing you to confirm your registration and create your first Heurist database.