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Note Taking Techniques Essay

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Cornell Note Taking System
(For Lecture or Reading)

Taking good notes is one of several keys to academic success. There are several reasons why developing an effective technique of note taking is important.

Reasons for Developing Effective Note Taking Techniques

1. Prevents forgetting:
Our memory fades quickly. For most students, forgetting occurs very rapidly after listening to a lecture, or reading over informational material even if the material is engaging and interesting. After lectures, for example, research shows that we forget 50% of what we hear within an hour and more than 70% within two days.

2. Encourages concentration:
Taking effective notes requires a student to be mentally active during a lecture or while reading. One has to pay attention, interact with information, make decisions about what to record, and write. Given that the mind is occupied with a demanding task, there is less opportunity for the mind to wander.

3. Records testable material:
Instructors generally expect students to remember and apply facts and ideas presented in lecture or in texts. Tests are based on ke...

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