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Y-DNA Surname Project
Frequently Asked Questions

How long will the testing take?

With the DNA Testing Lab the project uses the DNA Kit will be mailed the next working day after the Project Manager enters the order. It is mailed first class from Houston Texas. Results will be available about seven weeks after the DNA Kit is received by the Lab.

How will I get my results?

They will be sent to you via email.

Are there any age requirements?

You must be 18 years of age or older.

What about mtDNA testing?

The project does not have any plans for Mitochondrial DNA [mtDNA] at this time put testing is available at two levels from the Lab.

How many markers are tested?

The initial test is 12 markers?

Is there a test with more markers?

Yes, there is a 25-marker test available.

Why not just start with the 25 marker test?

The 12 marker test is good a way to start if you have no ideas on how you are connected to others with the same surname. The test will tell you one of two things:
A) You are NOT related to the others in the group.
B)  There is a reasonable likelihood that you are related to one or more members of the group.  In this case an upgrade to the 25 marker test may be indicated.

Is there another reason to start with the 12 marker test other than it is cheaper?

Yes. If you have a reasonably strong traditional genealogy and you are looking for a scientific proof as confirmation, then the 12-marker test is a good place to start.

How much is the upgrade from 12 markers to 25 markers?
The upgrade costs about $90.

How much is the cost of 25 markers on the first test ?
The 25-marker test is about $169 + $2 S&H.

When should I just start with the 25 marker test?
If you have a traditional genealogy that is somewhat suspect, or you have no records at all on how two branches of the family are connected, and you really want to know "for sure" if there is a connection, then start with 25.

What tests did the Project Manager order?
He ordered the 25-marker Y-DNA test plus the "course" mtDNA test.

What can I do if I am a female and want to participate?

You must find a brother, father, or male cousin (who will to sign the release) and have his DNA tested.

I have many men in my family should they all be tested?

No, there is limited information gained from having a father/son or two (or more) brothers tested.
The test can be used to insure that the pregnancies were marital (if there is any doubt about the father.)

If I have both a father and son willing to be tested, which one should I choose?
Choose the father, as there is one less generation from the father back to the ancestors we are trying match.

How about 2nd and 3rd cousins, should they be tested?

Here is where the value of a paper genealogy and Y-DNA testing can combine to improve the reliability of both. A part of what we are doing is to deduce the Y-DNA "signature" an ancestor from the test data.  So the more branches we can test the better. Also having at least one person tested in each branch might allow us to determine the "signature" of an ancestor  5, 6, 7, or more generations back. 

Is there a value to testing both my Y-DNA and my uncle's Y-DNA?

Yes. For each marker that matches exactly, then that is the value for your grandfather. This is useful since it removes two generations of possible changes when it comes to comparing it with other branches of the family.

I would like to be tested but I cannot afford it. What can I do?
Don't give up hope, there may be help available. Send your genealogy detail to the Project Manager. It is possible funds could be found to support all, or part, of your tests. The more interesting a genealogical question your test will answer, the more likely funds can be found.

Copyright © 2002-2003 John S Walden