Top note taking tips

Students chatting at locker

Developing good note-taking skills helps you record important information and makes it easier to study and pass those exams. So here are our top tips.

Whether using a notepad or computer, it’s a good idea to number pages, create an index page and also an A to Z glossary of important words, terms and abbreviations at the back. This will help you find information quickly when you need it.

Try not to copy down word for word what the teacher or lecturer says. You’ll have a better chance of remembering the information if it’s your own translation. Use keywords that will help kick-start your memory when you review the information later.

During class

Highlighted Text

Taking notes makes you listen more carefully, and helps you digest and record information. So taking notes in your lessons will increase what you learn and gets you into practice for your exams.

Highlighting information

If you hear words like ‘Remember ’ or ‘An important fact is’ – make sure you highlight these items in your notes to draw attention to their importance.

After class

Re-write your notes

Re-writing your notes after a lesson is a good habit and helps you to follow up on anything you didn't understand and write out abbreviations while the knowledge is still fresh – and in writing you will understand months down the line.

Too much info...

It can be hard to pick out information from screeds of writing so get into a habit of only jotting down the key points. Using bullet points, short sentences and abbreviations will make this easier.

Tailor made notes

Student Writing

Creating a system of symbols helps streamline information on a page. Put a question mark against anything you don’t understand, a star for a task, spiral for further reading and so on.

We all learn in different ways; some prefer writing, others find it easier to use visual notes like diagrams and others may prefer recording notes to listen to. Take our quick Suss Your Study Style quiz to find out how you learn best.

Suss your style quiz