Effective Note Taking
Why taking good lecture notes is important and how to do it.
Note taking may seem like a straight forward thing to do, but often the difference between passing a class and excelling in a class comes down to how effective you are at taking notes. Below are some proven tips that will help you take your notes to the next level.
- Summarizing the teacher's ideas in your own words makes it easier to retain the information.
- You can come up with questions about the lecture to ask the professor at a later time for further clarification.
- It allows you to add extra information that was not on the PowerPoint or a handout but is discussed in class.
- Note taking helps you focus on the important points of a discussion and focuses your attention on the subject.
- Print a copy of the slides so you can add additional notes.
- Create an outline, use abbreviations and make your notes brief.
- Write the date, time and heading describing the contents so you can refer back to it.
- Translate complex ideas into your own words.
- Highlight or circle concepts emphasized by the professor.
- Review notes the same day to make sure they are correct and to help you absorb the material more efficiently.
Effective note taking is a learned skill that can only improve with practice. If you work on introducing some of these ideas listed above, you will soon notice yourself absorbing more of the material.