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Note Taking Shortcuts. Reference. Standley , K.E. (1987). How to study. Palo Alto, CA: Dale Seymour Publications. Use standard abbreviations. E:\Symbols in note taking.doc. Shorten words by removing vowels from the middle of words. Purpose December Cucumber Remember Problem

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Note Taking Shortcuts

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Note Taking Shortcuts


  • Standley, K.E. (1987). How to study. Palo Alto, CA: Dale Seymour Publications.

Use standard abbreviations

  • E:\Symbols in note taking.doc

Shorten words by removing vowels from the middle of words

  • Purpose

  • December

  • Cucumber

  • Remember

  • Problem

  • Envelope

  • Prps

  • Dcmbr

  • Ccmbr

  • Rmbr

  • Prblm

  • nvlp

Substitute word beginnings for entire words

  • Association

  • Information

  • Document

  • Mathematics

  • Communication

  • Assoc

  • Info

  • Doc

  • Math

  • comm

Make up your own symbols and use them consistently

Use key phrases instead of sentences.

  • I see you before me.

  • Icyb4m

Use a / for th

  • Thought

  • Thing

  • Something

  • Anything

  • Everything

Use a small “o” at the end of a word for “ing”

  • Nothing

  • Something

  • Anything

  • Everything

  • Learning

  • Talking

  • Eating

Write these in words















4 Steps in Note Taking

  • Get Ready to Take Notes:

  • Prepare paperCornell Notes

  • Have pens/pencils ready.

  • Remove clutter from desk.

2. Take Notes:

  • Record your notes in simple sentences or point form.

  • Do not try to set up your notes as an outline as you will not have time.

  • Let your writing flow.

  • Leave lines between different point and ideas.

  • Write fast.

  • Use speed writing and abbreviations.

  • Write legibly.

  • Note: Don’t try to write down everything.

3. Clarify Notes

  • As soon as possible after class, go through your notes.

  • Rewrite anything that’s unclear or elaborate.

  • On the left side in the key word column, write important words and phrases or draw simple pictures.

  • Do not attempt to do this during a lecture as you will miss important details.

  • if the teacher stops for an extended period, use this time to do your key words.

  • Once you have entered your key words, write a summary of your notes at the bottom of your page.

Tips For Selecting Key Words

  • Key words should be as short as possible – a single word or a 3 to 4 word phrase at most

  • If you have difficulty remembering a term, make that your key word.

  • Use dates.

  • When you select a key word, form a visual of the key.

  • Always select your own key words – don’t borrow from others as you will have difficulty remember them

  • If a key word does not jog a memory of your notes, change it.

  • Use simple drawings instead of words.

  • Example: If you are talking about whales – you might write – whales surface 2 brea/e. Spout /ru

  • For the word whale, you might draw

4. Study your Notes

  • Review your notes periodically – once a week.

  • Cover the right side of your page.

  • Use only the key words to review the facts and information.

Practice Note Taking

  • Prepare several sheets of paper in the Cornell format or use handouts.

  • Your instructor will “lecture” briefly. Take notes during these lectures.

  • Do not do your key words until you finish your notes.

  • When your notes are finished, read them, clarify if necessary and write your key words.

  • Finally, in the bottom space, summarize what your notes are about.

    Remember to use speed writing, abbreviations and diagrams to simplify your notes

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