Note Taking Examples

Peter sent me these… What do YOU think of them?

I’ll give my feedback once I get yours first

Give us your feedback by leaving a comment below.

Get Better Grades, Note Taking, Note Example

Note Taking - Sample #1 - Chapter 1 Summary

How do your class notes look compared to these?

Get Better Grades, Note Taking, Note Example

Note Taking - Sample #2 - MindMap Diagram

What suggestions do you have for Peter to improve his note taking?

Get Better Grades, Note Taking, Note Example

Note Taking - Sample #3 - Use Of Colour

9 Responses to “Note Taking Examples”


  • I know you want to see him use mindmapping, but I am 50 yrs old and this is the way I took notes and did very well in school.

    The use of color is nice, but for me a bit redundant when you are already using a nice outline format, but he if he doesn’t mind switching colors all the time…

    I used to put asterisks and brackets in the left margin next to things that were key points or that I knew I needed to study more.

    Highlighters weren’t invented until my Junior Year and I didn’t find it efficient. It slowed me down to highlight sentences one after another. So, I drew a highlight bracket or asterisk in the book margin.

    I can’t read the details, but I wrote fragmented thoughts not full sentences unless it was necessary as a conclusion or to remember a difficult concept. Like the diagrams. If they are in the book, I didn’t redraw it, rather I wrote, “see diagram or chart on p. 123″. He is trying to do well in school and gets huge points for that!

  • I’m an accountancy student and could really relate with the first sample. I used to do notes like that till my third year cuz it fits my “objective” style in learning (like doing outline).

    But the other two examples are “lighter” and “easier” on the eyes and retain a mental image for good recollection (though I think that I will have a hard time of trying to create such notes).

  • confusing, jumbled

  • I am a 12th std Arts Student.

    I use to make a summary in shorthand and convert it into mind mapping with nice picture and colors in another paper and throw the summarized paper into the bin.

    Is it a wrong way?

    • That is a great way to start – eventually, you’ll want to do the MindMapping live AS you take notes because it forces you to focus on the LINKS and ASSOCIATIONS that are created WHILE you’re learning. BUT sometimes when you start, you might not be fast enough, so what you’re doing is great to start off. Just try to be a little more graphic as you take shorthand or bullet point notes. Within a few hours of practice, you’ll recognise that you can MindMap faster than taking notes.

      But – it’s NOT about the MindMap being ‘pretty’ – it’s just about YOU remembering when it counts – on your next test or exam!

  • For me, I really like to have the notes arranged on the page in a way that reflects their importance and prevalence in the lectures. I hate gaps or missing information and so I find it very hard to take notes at all if the information is incomplete or the context of it isn’t very clear. I love having a page of two of notes that contain everything important in the lecture arranged in a table or linking way so that I can easily find what I’m looking for when I go back to it, but this takes a lot of time as I have to think about how I will put the info onto the page and which topics repeat for each section or making sure I have all the important information.

    It’s also very hard as you never can be sure which parts of the lecture notes a lecturer will test. Something that may seem like just an explanatory example may actually be expected to be memorised and then will be tested.

    I used to take very long notes from textbooks when I was in highs chool but once I started university there was nowhere near enough time to do this as there was way too much information to cover and also the textbooks often had way more info than the lectures covered.

    For labs I do very short summaries with diagrams and pictures so I understand it instantly when I go back and I can fit for labs onto one page by dividing it up. This is the best note-making/taking I do that I really like but I’m not sure If there’s a way I can do this for lectures.

    What do you recommend Dr Marc Dussault for a very visual learner who likes having the complete picture??

    Also we are provided with the lecture slide notes afterwards so there’s no time-limit for me trying to take all the notes in class that are on the board, only for the extra things the lecturer says!

    • Dear Visual Learner,

      Please re-read your comment and you’ll see how you have “perfectionitis” – you have the affliction that so many very good students have – AIMING FOR PERFECTION – even with your notes that no one will ever see.

      Notes are supposed to be a SHORT CUT to the content – NOT A “COMPLETE summary” – when you master note taking – you only include what you think you won’t remember = that should be a LOT easier and quicker.

      Just remember your notes become obsolete either when you finish your course or your program/degree…

      They are not worth anything once the exam/testing is complete. When you become a doctor, engineer, lawyer… You can Google and access books – you won’t be going back to your class notes.

      Keep that in mind – “your notes are the mental/visual short cut to the content you need to remember on your next exam or test.”

  • How can this note taking be improved further??

    • The best suggestion for improved note taking is to MindMap your notes. I created a course that you can access via the hyperlink with a very talented artist, Paul Telling who teaches you the ‘secrets’ of how to draw to make your note taking fun and much more powerful.

      Research has proven that Mind Mapping improves memory retention and recall.

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