1. Lecturers sometimes elaborate on required readings (texts and supplementary readings). Read the material for the first time before - the lecture, not after.
2. Don't try to write down every word. If the lecturer repeats material in the text, don't take notes. Learn to abbreviate. Words can be shortened by omitting vowels: brought - brgt; lesson - lssn; happiness - hppnss; or words can be shortened by abbreviating: government - govt.; yesterday - yest.; or symbols can be used to substitute for words:
and - &
at - @
less than - <
more than - >
with - w/
without - w/o
Symbols such as these can be found in many dictionaries.
3. Rewrite your lecture notes as soon as possible, adding to them the material that you had not included in your original notes because of lack of time. If you do this at the typewriter, it won't take much time, and the rewriting will reinforce the original learning.
4. When taking notes, write only on one side of the paper. On the other side supplement your notes from your readings, discussions with your instructor, etc.
5. Listen, then write. If you concentrate hard on your note taking, you may miss the sense of the lecture.
6. Take notes in outline form only if the lecture lends itself to it. Sometimes instructors do not lecture in I, A, 1, a, order and an attempt to put notes in that form may detract from the sense of the lecture.
7. Sit close to the lecturer. If you and he are separated by 75 people, there are 75 reasons for you to be distracted.
8. Don't tune out the lecturer because you disagree with him. Make a notation in your notes so that you can question at a later time, but continue your note taking.
9. Leave blanks for words and phrases missed. Later ask the instructor or a fellow student to fill in the blanks.
10. There is a book by Walter Pauk entitled How to Study in College. It has a good chapter on notetaking.
11. Organize your notes. Date them. Label them by subject.
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