Before your Lecture:
- Review class readings on topic prior to lecture.
- Jot down any questions that you have from reading
- Sit up front so you can see and hear better.
- Be sure of your purpose and the speaker's purpose.
How to take Lecture Notes:
- Record the date, place, topic/title and presenter.
- Number your pages.
- Use dark ink and write on one side of the page.
- Use a double entry notetaking system (see "Cornell Notetaking System" handout)
- Write neatly. Make notes complete and clear enough to understand when you come back to them.
- Use shorthand ('Fe' for iron, '=' for equals, '@' for at, etc.) and abbreviations. Feel free to develop your own set of abbreviations, but please put a key at the top of the page so your notes can be understood.
- Highlight important items with asterisks or draw circles or boxes around critical info. Indentation, underscoring and starring are also effective for indicating relative importance of items. Show uncertainty with a circled question mark.
- Leave plenty of white space for later additions. Skip lines. Leave space between main ideas.
- Ask questions if permitted; if not, again jot down questions in your notebook.
- You can take these questions to office hours or peer-review sessions. You may also consult your readings again.
After class, utilize our Active Study Strategies worksheet to further engage with your reading and class notes.