Take Note

To continue on from my previous post, one of the areas for learning how to learn  is Ways of Studying Information. As I am currently designing career college courses, I am constantly thinking about strategies I can share with instructors to help them in the classroom.

According to Terry Doyle, there are nine main ways of studying information which are:
  1. Daily review/rehearsal/practice
  2. Organize the information
  3. Practice tests / Test reviews
  4. Summarizing
  5. Writing
  6. Saying aloud
  7. Peer questioning
  8. Proper time of day
  9. Proper location


Daily review and writing go hand-in-hand when taking notes in an academic class.  This article  states that taking notes in class and reviewing them has a positive impact on learning. However, students' notes are often inaccurate. Students are taking better notes and review material more effectively if faculty provide a scaffold in a form of outline or overview for students to use while taking notes. Highlighting, as I have told students many times, shows them where information is located on a page, but does not help them remember what was said or why they highlighted.

I also teach an EAP class, and note-taking is a core skill that I have realized people need to actively practice. Here are a couple of resources I use to teach it:
EAP Foundation Listening and Notetaking has a great checklist. I am a firm believer in checklists, especially when I get students to make them on the board. This makes them relevant and takes way less prep time.

I also use SFU Note-Taking Strategies. I select sections and have students teach a strategy to another student. The condition is that they have to choose something they are not entirely comfortable doing. 

Which of these methods for studying information do you find the most effective and why? Are there any other ways that you can share? 

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