Placeholder Image

Subtitles section Play video

  • uh...

  • todays workshop is called taking better lecture notes in just a quick uh... word

  • about the one next week it's called how to predict test questions

  • this is the first one of five workshops in a row i think it is that all have

  • that

  • terrible "T" word in it which is test or tests

  • so it's kind of a long series in how to become a great test taker which always

  • helps so that's uh... what's coming up next week

  • now i wanted to ask everybody a question before we start and uh... again

  • participation is welcome in these workshops

  • we're talking about taking notes while teachers are lecturing today so my

  • question is

  • kind of a simple one but i don't know if you've ever thought of this

  • why is it important or helpful for you to take notes

  • while a teacher is talking

  • what's the whole point of even doing that

  • to remember

  • yeah uh... one of the things that is the simplist way i can describe it is

  • you wanna take notes so that you don't have to rely on your memory

  • later on

  • you could be a fantastic listener and you can concentrate really well on the

  • teacher but unless you have an amazing ability to remember that

  • two or three or four weeks later when you're studying for a test on that

  • material

  • uh... it's almost impossible to remember what a teacher said

  • that's why you want to rely on your notes and if your notes are good and

  • they're complete and you can

  • study a lot from them

  • you should do better as a result

  • uh... the class that i teach

  • which is learn eleven a study skills course

  • my students are required on every test among other things

  • to do a

  • short writing probably less than a page where they describe in detail

  • something that i've taught them in class kind of like their teaching it back to

  • me

  • and very often amazingly often especially early in the semester

  • i get a student who writes as their answer

  • i don't remember

  • and how many points do they get for that

  • uh...

  • the big zero right and so what they're basically saying is

  • i was there that day it's like three weeks ago i remember

  • what you were talking about even remember what you were wearing

  • but i can't quite remember what you said and they're trying to actually go back

  • and remember

  • that's dangerous

  • so that's why you write it in your notes so that you can go over it and over it and

  • when the test comes it's still fresh in your mind that's the goal okay

  • so uh... as i mentioned a few minutes ago i'm gonna give you a handout that

  • uh... is sort of a a outline of what i'm gonna talk about hopefully i'll be able

  • to get all the way through this

  • today there's always a lot that i would love to share

  • never enough time so

  • i'll just go ahead and sort of give you a

  • but you can kind of pass that back

  • if there are extras back there you can just hold on to them and i'll get 'em at

  • the end and actually let me put some here

  • case people show up late

  • okay so in order to take better lecture notes uh... there are seven things

  • listed here uh... couple of little sub points so this will hopefully be easy for

  • you to follow uh...

  • people who are really good note takers

  • and there aren't that many of them actually because that's a skill uh...

  • end up doing almost all or all of these things regularly it's just a habit people

  • who are not good note takers

  • don't do any of these or maybe they just do one so if you can learn to do them

  • you'll be better at note-taking than most people

  • the first one on the list

  • has nothing to do with taking notes in class

  • it just has to do with preparing for lectures

  • there are two suggestions there

  • and i don't know if anybody here does

  • these already or not but

  • they're actually very simple but very hopeful when the

  • uh... lecture starts

  • the first one of these so this is the little sub point under number one

  • is to review the notes

  • and what notes are we talking about here

  • with

  • right the previous notes from the last time you were in class

  • most teachers when they lecture when that's their main way of teaching

  • when they come into the classroom they put everything down they might take role

  • and then usually they don't review alot they just sort of

  • hit the ground running right where they left off the time before

  • if it's been five days if it's been a week since you were in there last time

  • it's really hard to remember what the teacher was talking about at the end of

  • class and as a result

  • it's there's hard to focus at the beginning so if you were to spend five

  • to ten minutes

  • before class

  • right before

  • or earlier that morning or even the night before just kind of remembering

  • that it helps and then the other one that's part of that is uh...

  • previewing the textbook

  • and so if you have a teacher

  • who lectures basically from

  • the textbook

  • so every time you go there's a chapter covered for you to spend fifteen minutes

  • before you go to class

  • and become familiar with the main terms the

  • summary

  • all of that

  • it helps you when the teacher talks to start following them right from the

  • beginning kind of warming up your brain and so these again

  • might take a total of twenty or thirty minutes to do number one

  • but it actually helps alot when the lecture begins

  • so this is a very basic one

  • and uh... there's a lot more that i can say about that but i'm gonna go ahead

  • and move on

  • the second one

  • on the list is something that i always explain to my

  • students early in this semester very early

  • and that is when in doubt write it down that's my rule for note-taking

  • um...

  • are you able to write down everything the teacher says

  • no unless you are the fastest writer ever so that means all the time while

  • you're listening to the teacher you have to make choices

  • should i write that

  • do i not need to write that and sometimes it's really hard to tell

  • whether you should write something or not is that important or not

  • some teachers are really good about telling you

  • this is really important write it down that's nice

  • but most teachers don't do that they just talk and so one of the reasons that

  • you want to do these things

  • is so that when you get the class

  • and you listen to the teacher

  • you already have an idea of what's important in the book or what was made

  • important last time and then you can make good choices

  • but the other part of this is

  • uh... if you're ever in a class and the teachers talking fast and you're trying

  • to write things down and you're trying to decide

  • if you get to a point where they're saying something and you hesitated you

  • think

  • should i write that or not

  • what's the best thing to do

  • write it down

  • ok uh... it's much better to make a mistake on the side of writing too much

  • in your notes

  • rather than not enough and often times in my class i see

  • students

  • looking at me

  • and paying attention to me

  • and so that's nice to see

  • but then i make several points in a row

  • and i look and they just

  • are sitting there

  • just like it's a conversation and they're listening to me but they're not writing

  • any of it down

  • and that makes me always very nervous because there may be a test

  • two weeks or three weeks later

  • and i know that most of them are'nt going to remember anything of what i said

  • if you write it down and as as i said before you get to go back and review it

  • later so if you're ever wondering

  • it's like fifty-fifty should i write that or not go ahead and write it if you're

  • pretty much sure it's not important go ahead and skip it

  • but it's better write too much than not at all

  • okay so that's very simple principle number two

  • okay now for these next couple gonna slow down a little take a little more

  • time number three is my my main

  • uh... advice that i give students about note-taking

  • and that's to go on a diet

  • which sounds like a very strange uh... suggestion

  • anyone want to guess what i mean by that

  • mmhhh....

  • yeah that's right we'll uh... when somebody goes on a diet and they lose a

  • lot of weight what happens to their body

  • it shrinks right

  • that's what you're trying to do now i just got through telling you that the

  • number one mistake that most people make is that they don't write enough

  • they sit and listen but they don't write enough that's a problem

  • the second most common problem is this and that is once their hand starts

  • moving and they start writing

  • they write way

  • too many

  • words and every time you're writing these words the teachers always talking

  • faster than your writing which means you're falling

  • further and further behind it is very frustrating especially if your teacher

  • really is fast like a lot of them are and so

  • uh... what you should do is learn to go on a diet

  • there are actually several ways

  • to do that but i'm gonna show you one and kind of illustrate it and then

  • give you another one two ideas

  • the first one so again this is under number three

  • is to learn how

  • to use abbreviations a lot when you take notes

  • most of you who take notes now probably use

  • a few of those

  • but i want you to learn how to use even

  • more and so uh... i want to ask a question before i show you what i have in mind here

  • uh... some people i ask do you use abbreviations when you take notes and

  • they say oh no

  • no no i would never do that

  • and i ask them why and what do you think there

  • reason is

  • yeah they they're they're terrified

  • and this is a good fear

  • they're terrified that they're gonna forget what that's an abbreviation of

  • and then when they go back to their notes they don't even understand them so

  • that's a problem okay but

  • i have something in mind for you so let me show you this

  • um... if you were in

  • a

  • history class

  • and you walked in on the day of the lecture and your teacher said

  • today in class we're going to talk about the period of history

  • in our country after

  • the civil war which was called reconstruction

  • so that's the whole subject of the lecture

  • well you're gonna have to write that word reconstruction

  • a lot

  • you don't want to write that a lot it's a very very long word

  • and also and some of you who are

  • taking more technical classes

  • if you don't know how to spell the word

  • that slows you down even more because you're trying to get it right so i wanna

  • write the word reconstruction here and i know how to spell it so that makes it

  • faster

  • but just look you don't have to time it on your watch or anything but look how

  • long it takes me even if i write fast

  • to write that word

  • what is the teacher doing while i'm writing that

  • yeah talking if you ever get a teacher who says that's a long word i'll wait

  • while you all write it down

  • you should almost have a heart attack they never do that they're just talking

  • ok so while you're writing

  • they're getting further

  • and further away from you and so this is a mistake

  • well one abbreviation that people sometimes think of for this would be

  • something like this

  • and that's a lot shorter and even though it doesn't seem like it matters that

  • much

  • every second is kind of important when you're racing to stay up with the

  • teacher

  • so this would be good

  • uh... what's wrong with

  • this abbreviation

  • yeah this could stand for

  • lots of things

  • right and that's what we were talking about before you don't want to get

  • confused about that

  • but i'm gonna give you a suggestion and i know this is going to sound like a bad

  • idea but you just have to sort of hang with me for a minute

  • my favorite abbreviation of this word is not

  • this or this

  • it's this

  • and that's a real abbreviation that's like a diet down to one letter

  • now what i'm not saying is that when you abbreviate things that it should always be

  • one letter

  • anything you do to make it shorter is good but