There are several college note-taking methods that can help students organize their lecture learning, including:
- Cornell Method: Divide your class notes page into three sections: a wide column, a narrow column and a bottom section for taking summary notes. Take your main notes in the wide column, write keywords or questions in the narrow column, and summarize the lesson in the bottom section.
- Outline Method: Create an outline-style note-taking approach, using headings and subheadings to identify main ideas and supporting details. Using numerals and letters to distinguish specific points and indentations to make relationships between topics.
- Mind Mapping: This method is great for visual learners, associating different concepts in relation to one another through a network of interrelated ideas. Use different colors, shapes and symbols to create clusters of information around central ideas.
- Flow Method: Take your notes in a horizontal, continuous flow, separated by paragraphs adding new lines for each new topic. This helps to consolidate all material together in a linear fashion.
- Charting Method: Use tables, graphs, or charts to organize course material, breaking down specific categories of information and comparing different elements.
The key is to determine which method is right for you, and stick with it. Practicing regularly will help you refine your approach, and improve performance on exams showcasing what you’ve learned.