Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Academic Resource Center: Note-taking

Effective Note-taking

  • Note-taking should be an active process to help focus on what the teacher (or textbook) is covering, and what is most important.
  • Don't mindlessly write down everything the teacher or textbook says - that's transcription, which is passive.
  • Consider taking notes by hand because research shows it's a better method for retention.

Helpful Links

Examples

Cornell Note Taking Guide

  • Use a marker to divide the paper into three sections.

Text adapted from James Madison University: College of Education & Images from GoodNotes Blog on Medium.

  • Label each page with class, date, and topic.
  • Use the left side for the main topics and the right side for shorthand notes.
  • Any key terms discussed should go on the left side.
  • In your own words, summarize the main issues at the bottom of the page.

  • Use your notes to study. Focus on the ideas on the left side and your summary at the bottom.

Cornell Notes Videos