Home Tip of the Day Take Good Notes to Help You Retain Information

Take Good Notes to Help You Retain Information


While you are not participating in a traditional lecture, effective note taking is still important to your online learning success. Writing helps you retain knowledge – don’t rely on memory alone. Note taking gives your mind a chance to absorb the material it needs to learn. Not only can this help you to do better on tests, it’s also a great confidence booster when you’re studying and find yourself easily retaining the information.

There are many ways to take good notes – what works for one person may not work for another. Experiment with a few methods to find what’s best for you. Here are some tips to get you started:

  1. Organize your notes along the order of chapter objectives.
  2. Your notes should contain:
    – definitions of new vocabulary words
    -new concepts discussed in a chapter
    – questions you have about the material
  3. Review your notes within 24 hours of first studying the material. If you don’t review for 10-15 minutes within 24 hours, you will only retain 20% of what you initially learn.
  4. Keeping good notes for each unit or topic will give you a tool you can use to prepare for exams without feeling like you’re “cramming” everything in at the last minute.
  5. Don’t forget to review, review, and review some more. A semester’s worth of notes does you no good if you never look at the information again.

 – Online Learning Tips Staff