Adult Learning at the National Records of Scotland (NRS)

Find events, talks, courses and online resources.

The Learning section of the NRS website promotes the use and understanding of archives by learners of all ages and stages of learning.


Find out more about a range of subjects based on research in our record collections in the features section. There is a special series which commemorates the centenary of the First World War and on our records related to slavery.

Hall of Fame

The Hall of Fame provides examples of records in our collections relating to notable Scottish people. Entries can be browsed in the Hall of Fame A-Z.


Palaeography is the study of older forms of handwriting. It is important for anyone who wants to read historical records written in Scotland before the 19th century. We offer three kinds of learning:

  • offers practical tuition in palaeography for historians, genealogists and other researchers who have problems reading manuscript historical records written in Scotland in the 16th, 17th and 18th centuries
  • evening classes in Scottish Handwriting 1500-1700 (about which see our events, talks and visits page)
  • ‘Scottish Handwriting 1500-1700’ a self-help pack published jointly with the Scottish Records Association which can be purchased from our shop.

For more information on the above, see our Palaeography page.


We have been making the archives of Scotland available through our publications since the early 19th century. Whether you are studying history or reading it purely for your own pleasure, our range of publications can help bring the past alive.

Talks and visits

Would you like to visit NRS or hear a talk by a member of staff? Find out how to organise or participate in events, talks and visits.

Outreach and Learning Strategy

This strategy describes NRS’ Outreach and Learning services. We set out to connect and engage everyone with Scotland’s history, heritage and culture. Together we can learn about and be inspired by Scotland’s people, places and history and inform present and future generations.

Download a copy of our Outreach and Learning Strategy (115 KB PDF).

Further Resources

Services for Schools has educational resources and workshops aimed at primary and secondary schools.

If you have any questions, email the Outreach and Learning team on

Featured image: Photograph of Peter – alias John Porter, a prisoner in Barlinnie Prison, Glasgow, 23 March 1883. Crown copyright, National Records of Scotland, HH21/70/97/11/D

Outreach and Learning Services | National Records of Scotland | General Register House | 2 Princes Street | Edinburgh | Scotland | EH1 3YY | w: | Twitter: @NatRecordsScot

The Heritage Resources Portal is an Archaeology Scotland initiative.

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The Portal is funded by Historic Environment Scotland towards realising Scotland’s Archaeology Strategy.

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Post Author: r.boyde