I think the vast majority of us here on the Kilkenny campus take notes with pen and paper. No harm. Having the ipad or laptop to hand can lead to too many distractions. There is always the temptation to have a quick browse on Facebook!
Here are 8 important note taking strategies that you should adhere to:
- Read and prepare in advance of your lectures. Being familiar with the material means you will soon learn what is important. Highlight the key themes and concepts and perhaps jot down some questions you may have. Answers to those questions could very well be covered in your upcoming lecture.
- Have a separate notepad or folder for each of your subjects. It will help keep you organised.
- Date, number and title your lecture.
- Only write down the main points of the lecture. What are the essential components being discussed. Pay very close attention to your lecturer for cues such as when they say things like ‘this is important’, or ‘you need to know this’. Perhaps your lecturer will start speaking slowly or more loudly at certain points or may repeat things.
- There may be points you do not understand. Don’t ignore them. Make a note and then ask your lecturer after class to clarify things.
- Depending on your subjects, you may come across lengthy quotes on the lecturer’s presentation slides. Do not try to transcribe them; references are given so take those down and understand the point being made by the quote.
- The lecture summary is vitally important. This is where your lecturer will summarise the main points covered. Make sure you jot all of this down.
- Lastly try to review your notes after the lecture. It is important to do this when things are fresh in your mind. Fill in any blanks and perhaps highlight sections that you feel are particularly important.