Tuesday, September 11, 2012

How to Take Notes

"Learn how to listen and you will prosper even from those who talk badly.” Plutarch (AD 46-120) Greek Biographer & Philosopher.
The Student Learning Commons at the W.A.C. Bennett Library at Simon Fraser University has an exceptionally helpful on-line guide to effective note-taking at lecture. (It is a trifle disconcerting reading for the Lecturers themselves, because it implies--indeed, all-but declares--that many of us are dull, confused, inarticulate, habituated and otherwise deficient in our craft.)

The guide is available online in .pdf format at this hotlink.

The Student Learning Commons additionally has an entire page of links to on-line resources to improve the student's "Listening & Note-Taking" at this hotlink.

Note-taking in lecture is one of the skills that one learns at post-secondary institutions that has material applicability in life. Arguably, learning how to take written notes from oral delivery is one of the most practically valuable benefits of a post-Secondary education.

In professional, governmental, community appointments, inability to properly take notes in meetings is a significant handicap to success. Leaning now the art and skill of note-taking will position you to rise above the many and, in brute language, succeed.

Thaink about what proper note-taking actually is. It is the learned ability to listen and observe the speaker's body language and then recognise, record, and reorganise to your own requirements the truly valuable information, insight, and intelligence that the speaker is giving. This is money--free, found money-- simply picked up for nothing by those  who have taken the trouble to learn note-taking.

It is the wisdom beside the famous Shelrock Holmes rebuke to Watson: "you see, but you do not observe." Holmes has trained hmself in that skill and so takes for himself all the value that lesser others are unable to access. Be Holmes: raise yourself above the many

These resources linked here are immensely valuable: especially as it is increasingly common for undergraduates to confuse note-taking with copying down PowerPoint slides. It is rule worth learning that nowhere is PowerPoint the Lecture: lectures are what happen when you are distracted by copying down PowerPoint slides.

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