The Center for Academic Success

The Center for Academic Success
Some Components of NoteTaking:
 Auditory processing
 Reading (many processes)
 Working (short-term) memory
 Sorting out main ideas
 Summarizing
 Abbreviating
 Fine motor skills
 Writing fluency (speed and accuracy)
General Tips
 Focus on your professor
 Sit close to professor
 Ask professor to slow down if needed
 Ask/answer questions
 Evaluate as you listen
 Professor Giveaways
 Does he/she do something different when
covering important material?
 You don’t have to write everything
 Participate in class
Ways to Abbreviate
 Eliminate small words
 is, are, was, were, an, the, would, this, of, they, these,
this, that them
 Do NOT eliminate: and, in, on
 Use symbols
 + & - # w/o < >  
 Drop last letters of a word, or drop vowels within a
Examples of
 “The field of psychology is the study of human
behavior and mental processes, and has led to the
development of behaviorism.”
 In Notes:
 Psych. field = study of behav. and mental processes,
and  develop. of behaviorism.
 Dropped 13 words!
Cornell Note-Taking
Cornell Note-Taking
 At the top of each page of notes, copy the name of
the class and the date
 This will help you keep your notes organized
 Steps:
 Use the large note-taking column to write your notes
during the lecture
 Use short hand
 Abbreviate
 Create symbols for words used frequently in class
 Don’t copy ENTIRE sentences – it takes too long
Questions or Cues
 As soon as possible after class, create questions in the
left column based on the notes from class
 May also include some cue words in this column
 This well help:
Clarify meaning
Develop relationships between different ideas
Establish continuity
Strengthen memory
Studying for exams later
 After class, cover note-taking column with another
piece of paper
 Read the questions
 Answer the questions aloud in your own words
 Elaborate on the ideas represented by the cue words
 Ask your self and consider questions about the
What is the significance of these facts?
What principle are they based on?
How can I apply them?
How do they fit in with what I already know?
 Spend at least 10 minutes every week reviewing
your notes
 Go through the recite and reflect process each time
 This will help you be well prepared for your exams
 You will retain much more of the information than
just cramming before a test
 After you have written your questions and reviewed
your notes the first time:
 Summarize the main points of the notes on that page
on the bottom
 Use this information to help you keep the information
 Helpful for finding continuity between multiple pages
of notes
Outline Method
 Organize your notes utilizing outlines
 Put the main point of each section of the lecture
beginning at the far left side of the page
 Each sub-point should be indented to the right
 This will help you see what is most important and
 Moving to the least important and most specific details
Utilizing Visual Aids
 If your learning strengths are visual, find ways to
turn the lecture notes into visual representation
 Use:
 Concept maps
 Diagrams
 Color coding for different sections of the
 Utilize arrows and other symbols that make it more
Sharing Notes
 Find someone you can sit down with after class
to review notes with
 Check to see if either one of you is missing any
notes from the lecture
 Write down questions to ask your professor if
there is some disparity between the notes
 Discuss what was talked about in class
 Review previous notes while waiting for your
next class to start
Note-Taking Tricks
 Tape record the lecture/use smart pen
 Can help if you feel like you can’t keep up with
 Listen (auditory learners)
 Transcribe (visual learners)
 Listen while doing something active (Tactile learners)
 80% of lecture is remembered if rewritten or
reviewed within 24 hours
How Can Consultants
 Why not…
 Review notes with your student after their class
 Help them print out notes on blackboard beforehand
 Collaborate with professor to make notes more
 Scribe for your student
 Help them organize their notebook
 Put reviewing notes on their to-do list
 Set small attainable goals to help improve notetaking/reviewing habits
Note-Taking Resources