Tip 1: Outline, use your own words, have a code, rewrite
Unless you have a knowledge of shorthand, writing every word the instructor says
will be difficult. Listen for the main points and what the instructor emphasizes.
Try not to concentrate on details. Don't worry about spelling. Just get what
information is important on paper. Listen for transition words (first, second,
next, finally). This indicates that the instructor is moving from point to point.
Develop an abbreviation code you can use efficiently. Be consistent with your
abbreviations. Examples may include: w/ for with; ex for example; tx for
treatment,= for equals. Underline key words and points. Write down what is written
on overheads or on the board. Read material before the next class if possible.
This will make the lecture more comprehensible and your notes will be better.
Most instructors assume that you have read the material before class. Add details
or examples from the text after class. The sooner you do this, the more details
and examples you will remember. This will assist you when studying for tests. Ask
to copy another student's notes if you miss a class.
Tip 2: Have the necessary materials
Always come with two writing instruments and plenty of paper. Remember that we
forget half of what we hear immediately, and another 50% two
Every week, spend 10 minutes reviewing your notes and you will retain most of
what you have learned.