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Assignment and Study Help

Assignment and library skills

Notetaking

Why should I take notes? 

As a student you will be faced with large amounts of information through your classes, readings and research for assessments. You will need to ask yourself:

  • How can I judge the value of what I am reading?​
  • How can I select what I need?
  • How can I remember what I need to know?
  • How can I make sense of what I am reading?

Taking notes, whether electronically or by hand, is a good way to collect and record the ideas you come across.

 

Good notes are: 

  • personal - with your own structure and abbreviations 
  • easy to read and follow 
  • focused 

When taking notes:

  • Make sure the resource is relevant before you begin taking notes – you can do this by skim reading.
  • Record the resource's author, name and publication details and page numbers for information so you can reference them later
  • Include important information like keywords and definitions or explanations from the reading as well as things you might forget late
  • Summarise points in your own words so you better understand concepts and ideas. Include your own observations within the notes so you can use these while writing 

 

Different ​note taking styles 

  • Concept mapping - good for getting the overview of a topic and how points are directly connected 
  • Headings - write a new heading for each point, followed by a brief explanation 
  • Cornell note taking method - dividing the page into two and writing.

For more information about styles, go to the 4 Note-taking Systems to Consider link in the note taking resources tab.

A notebook with a pen on it

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