FIVE NOTETAKING METHODS
Great note-taking takes practice. You have to find a method that works for you, and that may change depending on the class that you’re in (for example, a science class versus a humanities class). Here are 5 methods that are proven to be successful. Read over each one and decide if there’s one that might work for you.
These styles are described in the format you would use to take notes in class. You might find that a comfortable method is a combination of 2 or more of the ones listed here, and that’s fine.
Figure out what works for you and stick with it!
THE CORNELL METHOD
Layout of the page and
where to write
You physically draw a line vertically down your paper, leaving 2.5 inches on the left and 6 inches on the right.
This allows you to take notes on the right-hand side of the page leaving space on the left to summarize the main point with a cue word or phase.
Organization of concepts
When the instructor moves to a new topic, skip a line.
It is also a great idea to use some organizational structure to your whole page.
Use an indented system – kind of like outlining
You can underline important words.
Filling in blanks.
If you aren’t able to completely write down an idea before the instructor moves on to a new topic, fill it in after class.
Reviewing and Studying
After class, test your knowledge of course material by covering up the right side of the page, reading the cue words, and trying to remember as much information as possible. Then check to see if you
remembered correctly. Also write page and day summaries.
This is a simple and efficient way of recording and reviewing notes – it’s easy for pulling out major concepts and ideas. It’s simple and efficient. It saves time and effort because you “do-it-right-in-the-firstplace.”
ACADEMIC SUCCESS & DISABILITY SERVICES, University of Redlands 10/8/2010
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