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notetaking_handout(goerzen 2011)


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notetaking_handout(goerzen 2011)

  1. 1. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA GETTING TO THE POINT: NOTE TAKING STRATEGIES FOR THE UNIVERSITY STUDENT STUDENT HANDOUT Notes | Flickr - Photo Sharing! (n.d.).Retrieved February 22, 2011, from TIPS: □ Attend all the lectures or discussion groups □ Date the first page of all of your notes (all the time!) □ Use a topic heading or sub-heading to label your notes – this makes it easier to tell where discussions start and end and new ideas/thoughts come into play □ Use phrases/point form not sentences □ Create your own symbols and abbreviations □ Write down all material that the instructor emphasizes (i.e. writes down, repeats) □ Write down main ideas, a few supporting details and one example □ Look for and mark relationships between ideas, concepts or thoughts □ Summarize and review material prior to next class 1
  2. 2. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA DIFFERENT LECTURES, DIFFERENT NOTES LECTURE-BASED COURSES: CORNELL METHOD Subject: Notetaking_________________ Date: 09/14/2005_____ Main Ideas Details Cornell Cornell Method Note taking Before class, draw a vertical line1 ½ inches from left edge of the paper.Cue Column area Write notes to the right of line. Reserve the left column for key word summaries (cues), headings and titles and sample questions. Fill in this left hand column when you reviewing notes after class. Summary Make sure each page includes a date and title of lecture (even if instructor Title and date each lecture does not have title). Make title meaningful. Cornell method is best when the information is given in a sequential, Best for orderly lectures orderly fashion This style of note taking requires you to go back and review your notes This column is to be filled in promptly to fill in the left hand column with cues pertaining to the concepts after the lecture with described in the note taking column. headings, sub-headings, cues and key words. Why should use the Cornell Method? 1. Encourages organization of class notes. 2. Results in polished set of notes to study from. 3. Aids in getting information into both short- and long-term memory. 4. Saves time when studying for periodic, mid-term, or final examinations. Summary: This section of the page is dedicated to providing a summary of the material which has been described and written in the note taking column on this page. This is a great way to review your class notes and provides an excellent study aid for future tests and exams. • Please see the Cornell Method templates attached on p.9-10 of your hand-out. • Check here for more options to create your own note-taking templates. 2
  3. 3. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA OTHER LECTURE-BASED NOTE TAKING STRATEGIESThere are many other note taking methods and strategies out there which might be better suited to meetyour individual needs. It may be beneficial to research a few more note taking strategies to try out whichone is best for you! Here is another note taking strategy that can be useful in lecture based courses:OUTLINE METHODThe main advantages of this specific note taking strategy are outlined below: • Illustrates major points and supporting ideas • Requires critical thinking throughout the lecture in order to organize ideas • Helpful for a lecture that may be presented in a disorganized wayExample:Bones – living organs; 206 in body, 13% of weight A. Marrow – in center of bones, contains nerves and blood vessels 1. Red a. In flat bones (ribs) & ends of long bones b. Produces red blood cells in adults 2. Yellow – mostly flat tissue a. In center of long bones b. Might make red blood cells if great blood loss or with certain blood diseases B. Haversian canals – carry blood thru bones (of oxygen, food and wastes) C. Periostium – protective membrane covers bone 3
  4. 4. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA PROBLEM-SOLVING COURSES (MATH, ECONOMICS, ACCOUNTING): T – NOTESA variation of the Cornell Method can be used in problem-solving based courses such as mathematics oreconomics.Lecture Title or Topic: T Notes Date: _____________ divide the two columns into either: Terms Concepts/Ideas Definitions Visual Diagrams Examples Theories Explanations Equations/Formula Evidence/Proof/Explanations Proof/Explanations/ExamplesAnother example of “T – Notes” specifically in a mathematics class looks like this: 4
  5. 5. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA DISCUSSION-BASED COURSES: MIND MAPS1Advantages for this type of note taking strategy: • Shows the structure of the subject and linkages between points • May be used on their own or in conjunction with Cornell Method • Useful for: o Summarizing information o Consolidating information from different research sources o Thinking through complex problems o Presenting information that shows the overall structure of your subject Sample mind map from Becoming a Master Student 2 EFFECTIVELY USING AND REVIEWING YOUR NOTES: The 5R METHOD1 Tony Buzan, Use Both Sides of Your Brain (New York, NY: Dutton, 1991).2 Ellis, 149. 5
  6. 6. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA1. RECORD • Find a way to arrange your page that is comfortable for you (Cornell, outline, mind maps) • Review readings in advance. Doing so means you have a better chance of understanding what the professor is talking about and helps you pick out important points • Learn your professor’s verbal and non verbal cues2. REDUCE • 80% of material is lost with a 24-hour period if you don’t review • Doing reduction quickly after class (10-15 minutes) allows you to: o identify the key point while they are still fresh o identify concepts you didn’t understand fully (or can’t remember) o come up with questions to resolve by consulting your textbook/professor or TA o summarize key points3. RECITE • Studies show that saying material aloud helps with information retention4. REFLECT • Where does this lecture fit into the objectives of the course? • What does this information tell you about the larger world? What does it connect to? • Why is this information important? How can it be used? • What kind of exam questions could be extracted from this material?5. REVIEW • Short, sharp reviews work best • Review 1: Same day as class • Review 2: At the end of the week, compile all of your notes onto one sheet • Review 3 & on: Each weekend, review that sheet and ask yourself if anything has changed, or if you see the links between the 13 sheets of paper! • Before your exam, review your 13 sheets. Due to your ongoing review, studying will be much less onerous. E- STRATEGIES 6
  7. 7. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA1. Visit the Learning Commons website for more note-taking resources get-started/study-toolkits/notetaking-toolkit/ or for info about peer tutoring (in-person and online), other learning skills toolkits and workshops, study groups and a wealth of learning and research resources.2. Free online Mind Mapping tools:  Bubbl. Us  Text 2 Mindmap Other online resources (suggested by students) include:  > University of Texas at Austin  > York University’s workshop on note taking > Helpful info on “Learning from Lectures”/Learning from Textbooks from the U of Guelph.  For additional online learning skills workshops visit the UBC Library Events Calendar at or check out Student Services in-person workshops at New Technology and Note Taking: o Laptops or paper and pen? A study that compared conventional note taking to note taking on a PC found that students handwriting notes took more notes and more compact notes than did those working on a computer. There was not significant difference between the two groups on multiple choice and free-recall texts given one week later.3 o Keep in mind when choosing to take notes with a laptop over paper and pen: lecture notes tend to be full of little diagrams, sketches, circles, arrows, wavy lines and so on. Either have a laptop equipped with a drawing tool, or bring a pen and paper along for back-up. o Instructor’s lecture notes: A 2002 study found that biology students who used instructor’s lecture notes performed worse on exams than student who avoided using notes.4 These notes need to be used to improve clarity of lecture or encourage advanced preparation—not as a replacement for your own notes.3 H. Van Oostendorp, “Studying and annotating electronic text,” in J.F. Rouet, J. Levonen, A. Dillon & R.J. Spiro(eds.), Hypertext and Cognition, (Hillsdale, NJ:Erlbaum).4 Terence M. Murphy and Victoria Cross, “Should students get the instructor’s lecture notes?” Journal of BiologicalEducation 36, no. 2 (2002): 72. 7
  8. 8. THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA REFERENCES“10 ‘Worthwhile consideration’ for improving lectures.” The Teaching Professor 18, no. 1 (2004): 3.Buzan, Tony. Use Both Sides of Your Brain. New York, NY: Dutton, 1991.Burke, R. et. al.. Educating for change. Toronto: Between the Lines & Doris Marshal Institute for Education and Action, 1991.Dochen, Carol and Hodges, Russ. Academic Transformation: The Road to Success. Upper Saddle River,NJ: Pearson Education Inc., 2005.Ellis, Dave. Becoming a Master Student. St. Charles, IL: Houghton Mifflin Company, 2000.Fleet, Joan, Fiona Goodchild and Richard Zajchowski, Learning for success: Effective strategies for students, 3rd ed. Scarborough, ON: Nelson Thomson Learning, 1999.Gaylin, Willard. “Faulty Diagnosis.” Harper’s (October 1993): 57-64.Giltrow, Janet. Academic Writing: Writing and Reading Across the Disciplines, 2nd ed. Peterborough, ON: Broadview, 1995.Hartly, James. “Studying for the future.” Journal of Further and Higher Education 26, no. 3 (2002): 215.Hull, Jillian and Modahl, Amy. (Eds.). Student Success: Introduction to College Studies (2nd Ed.). Dubuque,IO: Kendall/Hunt Publishing Company, 2004.Murphy, Terence M. and Victoria Cross. “Should students get the instructor’s lecture notes?” Journal of Biological Education 36, no. 2 (2002): 72.Nielsen, Jakob. “How Users Read on the Web,” Jakob Nielsen’s Alertbox for October 1, 1997,, (14 April 2004).Robinson, F.P. Effective Study. New York: Harper & Row Publishers, 1970.Van Oostendorp, H. “Studying and annotating electronic text.” In J.F. Rouet, J. Levonen, A. Dillon & R.J. Spiro (eds.). Hypertext and Cognition. Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum, 1996. 8