Rules of Note-Taking
Review: Review previous notes before the lecture begins. This provides context and allows you to connect new ideas and information with previously learned material.
Think! Notes should include your thoughts as you process the lecture. You must be actively engaged, thinking about the content while taking notes.
Key concepts: As you hear and see information presented in lecture, you should identify and record key concepts, and skip less meaningful details and information. Filter what the teacher says and take notes on those ideas that will prompt your memory.
Notes, not dictation: Do not write in full sentences as this requires too much time and may cause you to miss important points. Substitute phrases for sentences, and words for phrases whenever possible.
Use your own words: Whenever possible, put ideas in your own words rather than quoting the lecturer. This requires comprehension and will help you remember material longer.
Format: Use an informal but uniform format. Underline main concepts and indent sub-concepts. Leave space for later additions.
Organization: Number your pages and keep notes in order. It is best to use a bound notebook as this helps maintain the pages in sequential order.
Rework: Rework your notes shortly after completing them. Add points, diagrams and other reminders, but do not rewrite them as this detracts from time that is better spent in other activities.
Review: Review your notes shortly after completing them and shortly prior to the next lecture or assessment.