Making Sense Of Your Notes


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This slide presentation provides tips on expanding the ways in which individuals take and make notes.

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Making Sense Of Your Notes

  1. 1. Making Sense of Your Notes Rosalyn Shahid Oakland University Rochester Hills, MI 2010
  2. 2. Note-taking <ul><li>When you take notes the goal is to extract important information from the author in a concise manner. But this approach limits learning. More important than taking notes is making good use of notes, which is why I’m suggesting that note-taking involves two important aspects: note review and note making. </li></ul>
  3. 3. Note Review <ul><li>Simply taking notes is not enough. You must return to the notes you’ve taken and review them in a few ways: </li></ul><ul><li>Take notes prior to attending class from your text. </li></ul><ul><li>Re-read your notes. </li></ul><ul><li>Make sense of notes that are inadequate. For example, if you’ve missed some important points from a lecture ask a friend to compare notes. </li></ul><ul><li>Compare your lecture notes to the text. How do they vary? </li></ul><ul><li>After the lecture make sure that you are on the right track. </li></ul>
  4. 4. Note making <ul><li>Note making is less restricted than note-taking. Unlike note-taking where you rely heavily on the authors’ or professors’ perspective note making relies on your thoughts and interpretations. </li></ul>
  5. 5. Note making <ul><li>Note making integrates reader reactions to texts in the form of paraphrasing, summarizing, critical analysis, questioning, and internal response. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Two Ways to use Note Making <ul><li>Summary Note </li></ul><ul><li>Critical Note </li></ul>
  7. 7. SUMMARY NOTE <ul><li>Note making </li></ul>
  8. 8. Summary Note <ul><li>Summary writing takes many forms. In the case of the summary note it is primarily to help you internalize what you have read, heard, or seen in your own words. </li></ul><ul><li>The summary note is shorter version of the original. It should highlight the major points from the much longer subject, such as a text, speech, film, or event. </li></ul><ul><li>Although you may want to use the summary note to help you write papers and such the purpose here is strictly for internalizing what you have learned. </li></ul>
  10. 10. First Way to make Summary Note <ul><li>Read the information or reread notes you have written. </li></ul><ul><li>Determine what you believe the main idea to be. Highlight words or phrases that lead you to this conclusion. </li></ul><ul><li>Write a sentence that summarizes the information. </li></ul><ul><li>Re-read your original notes and/or text to ensure that your summary sentence gets at the main idea. </li></ul><ul><li>Add 5-7 key points that support your summary sentence. </li></ul><ul><li>Finally, write a concluding sentence. </li></ul>
  11. 11. Test Your Ability <ul><li>Colorado State University has put together a wonderful site that helps you with identifying main ideas and tips for writing summaries beyond the summary note. Take a moment to test your ability to identify a concise summary statement </li></ul><ul><li>Then make sure to add this site to your favorites. I’m sure you’ll find a need for this resource. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Second Way to Make a Summary Note from Wormelli, R. (2005). Summarization in any subject: 50 techniques to improve student learning. ASCD, Virginia <ul><li>Remove trivial information. Draw a line through flowery language like adjectives, examples that are similar, and transitional words that when removed do not change the meaning of the text. </li></ul><ul><li>Remove redundant information. </li></ul><ul><li>Replace specific language with general terms. For instance if the text lists, “football, basketball, and baseball” you might replace it with popular American sports. </li></ul><ul><li>Write a two part topic sentence. The topic sentence should include the subject and the author’s claim. </li></ul>
  13. 13. Third Way to Make a Summary Note from Wormelli, R. (2005). Summarization in any subject: 50 techniques to improve student learning. ASCD, Virginia <ul><li>Use a T-Chart </li></ul><ul><li>Use these terms in your T-Chart </li></ul><ul><li>Cause and Effect </li></ul><ul><li>Claims and arguments for or against </li></ul><ul><li>Problems and solutions </li></ul><ul><li>Questions and Answers </li></ul>Main Ideas Supporting Details Three reasons President Obama proposed health care legislation 1. 2. 3. Three reasons his opponents fought against the legislation. 1. 2. 3. Presidents who attempted health care reform 1. 2. 3.
  14. 14. Summary Note Variations <ul><li>There are many ways to create a summary. I have identified three ways in this presentation. I encourage you to try these and find others that are useful to you. The goal of the summary note is not to simply repeat information, rather it is a means to open your mind and help the content stick. </li></ul>
  15. 15. CRITICAL NOTE <ul><li>Note Making </li></ul>
  16. 16. Critical Note <ul><li>In this note making procedure you are expected to ask so what of the author. Quite often when reading material we ask why a given reading is important internally, however we seldom are question the author for all to hear. This note making technique not only forces you to critique the author, but it recognizes that good readers should be good questioners – even when it means questioning the authority. Note makers must determine why a is reading relevant to them and their world. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Ask So What? <ul><li>Ask these questions of the author: </li></ul><ul><li>What is the authors’ intent? </li></ul><ul><li>Whose perspective is the article written from? </li></ul><ul><li>Whose perspective is excluded in the article? </li></ul><ul><li>Why is their voices ignored? </li></ul><ul><li>Does the author paint one group in a negative light? </li></ul><ul><li>How does the authors’ word choice influence the message? </li></ul><ul><li>Consider the flip side of the argument. Is there information that should be considered that is not? </li></ul><ul><li>How does this article effect me or my world? </li></ul>
  18. 18. Critical Note on Christopher Columbus <ul><li>The Wikipedia entry describes Christopher Columbus thusly, Christopher Columbus (c. 1451 – 20 May 1506) was a navigator , colonizer , and explorer whose voyages across the Atlantic Ocean led to general European awareness of the American continents in the Western Hemisphere . With his four voyages of exploration and several attempts at establishing a settlement on the island of Hispaniola , all funded by Isabella I of Castile , he initiated the process of Spanish colonization which foreshadowed general European colonization of the &quot; New World &quot;. </li></ul><ul><li>Click the link below to read more </li></ul><ul><li> </li></ul><ul><li>Read the entry on the right. Then use the following questions to guide your reading. Finally, make a critical note. </li></ul><ul><li>Whose perspective is the written from? </li></ul><ul><li>Whose perspective is excluded? </li></ul><ul><li>What language does the author use to describe Columbus. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Why Use a Critical Note <ul><li>Although the entry provides factual information on the exploits of Christopher Columbus some aspects have been excluded. Particularly the atrocities Native Americans suffered as a result of Columbus’ exploits. </li></ul><ul><li>This is one example of how text can provide one view point. The critical note provides you with an opportunity to expand your learning and to avoid taking the authors words at face value. There is merit in questioning the author. </li></ul>
  21. 21. Review <ul><li>Note making differs from Note-taking in that it is less restrictive. It allows for you to have a perspective on what you are reading. </li></ul><ul><li>Note making can come in various forms. We have reviewed the critical note and summary note as a note making strategy. </li></ul><ul><li>Note making should be used in addition to note-taking. </li></ul><ul><li>Note making is a means of self-reflection and students benefit when they are reflective learners. </li></ul>