Four Effective Ways Notes Lectures Down

4 Mins read

Why does a student need notes?

You cannot do without note-taking while studying. This skill is ideally acquired in high school. In college and university, it is required from the very first day. After all, the student needs:

  • Quickly record huge amounts of information in lectures.
  • Structure data to make it easier to remember.
  • To prepare for tests and exams, and with notes, it is much easier to do this.
  • Sometimes teachers are allowed to use their notes during the tests.

Many teachers require you to bring them notes for verification and without this, they do not give a grade.

If you know how to take notes, you will not be lost. Do not be lazy just to use this skill. Can’t you? Then learn! That’s what a student is for.

By the way, do you know all the ways how to write notes? Read about the most popular and effective ones in our article. Obviously, when you need actual assignments done, remember that you always have access to an essay writing service.

Isolate the Main Idea and Write Only It

This method is especially good for taking note-taking of educational literature. We open the book (brochure, training manual) and, with a step of one to three or five paragraphs, look for the very essence in the text. We write it down.

At the same time, the skill of isolating really necessary information from large volumes is being pumped.

It will not be easy at first, you will start writing down everything that the teacher says, fearing missing something important. But if you listen attentively to the teacher’s words, and not note them down mechanically, then you will quickly learn to grasp the basics, the main idea.

A better understanding of the lectures will come as a bonus.

Try to write your notes in legible handwriting. You will thank yourself later. Otherwise, when preparing for a test or exam, you will not understand anything in your scribbles. The teacher, of course, has no right to find fault with handwriting, but he will also not approve if you hand over an abstract that is impossible to read.

Index method – The More Schemas, The Better

It consists of the active use of tables, graphs, figures, underlining key concepts.

Index method:

  • on the one hand, it is self-sufficient, with its help you can schematically expand the entire lecture or paragraph from the textbook;
  • on the other hand, it perfectly complements the classic synopsis.

According to the student feedback, this method helps extremely well to prepare for exams. Of course, they pair this method with employing GradeMiners to get some more free time.

Cornell’s Method – For Large Amounts of Information

Take a larger sheet, preferably A4, and, leaving free space above and below, divide with a vertical line into two parts (the left is narrower, the right is wider).

At the top, write the title: the date of the lecture, the subject, the name of the teacher, the main topic.

On the right, you record the main theses of the lecture.

On the left – additional information for each thesis: dates, names, formulas, etc.

At the end of the lesson, or better after some time, for example, the next day, return to the “raw” synopsis and add a short summary of the entire lecture in the remaining lower free field.

This is how a professor at Cornell University recommended his students to write notes in the middle of the 20th century, hence the name – the Cornell method. As practice shows, it helps not only to identify and record the most important information but also to quickly memorize it due to the fact that the student then returns to what he wrote, analyzes, and supplements.

Mental maps – Hard to Learn, Easy to Use

Write down the main idea in the center of the sheet, and from it (or, conversely, to it) with arrows, as in a quest game, lead the particulars:

  • dates from the most ancient to the desired one;
  • causal relationships;
  • your thoughts about;
  • brief explanations, opinions of various experts, etc.

This way of taking notes seems difficult, but it’s worth getting started, and in fact, it turns out to be simple, straightforward, and very useful. Mind maps help you quickly figure out a long, confusing lecture that is oversaturated with theory.

The disadvantage that nothing can be done about it is that teachers often require more traditional notes, long notes made during lectures, and reading textbooks. But nothing prevents you from making mind maps just for yourself, like cheat sheets.

All Viable Options

Of course, the listed methods of note-taking are not the only ones possible. But they are the most versatile. Suitable for most items. They help to structure and assimilate almost any information. And for a better result – mastering the material, successful preparation for a seminar, test, or exam – they can be combined.

Furthermore, whenever you’re trying to deal with assignments, remember to get as much relevant information as you can. For example, when trying to learn how to write essays – Then, note this information too for better understanding. Using the methods above in a dedicated way will boost your productivity exponentially.


Introducing Benjamin Oaks – the man of many talents, including academic writing. Graderminer to the backbone, Benjamin takes great pride in helping new generations of college graduates in the U.S. to get their diploma successfully and be able to pay off college loans faster. Also, Benjamin is a cool guy to talk to on non-work related topics, from sports to high cuisine.

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