I’m Back!

Please apologize my absence I have had quite a large amount of work the past few weeks. The Good news is I’m back! Yes that is right but I have not had time to think about any good topics to cover. This is quite a predicament as you can well imagine. My request is that you comment on this post with ideas of topics that you want to read about. I will have a new post up for you ,but like I said I need your help so post your idea and check back on Friday for the post.

Notes Got You Down?

my old chem notes

This Is my first post in my series on note taking in college. When most people think note taking they think of scribbling down everything on the board or what the professor says. There is usually no structure to these notes and they tend to not be very useful when it comes time to study for that big final exam. Well here at Collegetipster we are about to “hopefully” put an end to this crises by introducing a few of the best note taking methods out there.

 In this post we will be focusing on Cornell Notes. Most of you are probably wondering what these are. Well Cornell Notes are just like regular notes but with a few modifications. You draw a line down you paper leaving about 5-6 inches on the right side of your paper to put you notes. The left side of this line is used after class during your first review session (Yes, reviewing your notes is necessary to get a good grade no mater how you take them) and you only put the main ideas here. This will allow you to do a quiz and recall study session later. There is one more part to Cornell Notes that I personally do not use and that is to draw a horizontal line a few inches from the bottom of the page and place a summary of that days notes there. This has many uses and is great when you need to find out what the notes are about instead of reading the whole page come finals time. Well now that you have some working knowledge on Cornell Notes we can dive a little deeper into why you should use them and more importantly how if used properly can get you the A you deserve.

 After being in a lecture class for only a few weeks now and everyone is complaining about the same thing. If you are in or have ever had a lecture class you probably already know what this complaint is. They say that there is no way they can write down everything that the professor says and what they put on the PowerPoint. I personally think this is a stupid complaint. Yes, I did just say it was stupid because why would you have to write down everything that is said. When you do this you are not listening to the professor and are missing things that they are saying because you are too focused on copying information. You are probably going okay then mr. smart guy then what am I supposed to write then. Well not everything that is for sure but there are some things you do want to make sure you get down.

  • Definitions- these have an obvious reason to be recorded in your notes

  • Dates and Names- these are also obviously necessary

  • If you are taking a technical class write down the examples you will need them later

  • Questions you have- these will give you something to ask the professor and also something to study but we will talk about that in a little

 Never write this information in complete sentences that is just more writing you have to do. I suggest putting most of this in bulleted lists and there doesn’t need to be any structure to these bullet points they only need to make sense to you.

my new chem notes

Okay so you have taken the notes and are sitting down to do your first review. The first thing you should do is skim over the notes and place the main ideas of the notes in the left hand column. Okay got it now just put it down and walk away your done for now. Yes just put down the notes and go work on something else there is time to read them tomorrow. So have you had at least one nights sleep? Good now we can continue reviewing your notes. Take a piece of paper and cover up that right column so only the left side is visible. Now using only the left side try to run the lecture through your mind and only look on the right side if you get stuck. I have found this to be one of the best study techniques out there. I also am a flash card lover. I take the left column and make flash cards from It and also those questions that we wrote and got the answer to earlier. The left column is so effective for studying because you have placed all the main ideas here and we all know that these will be placed on the test.

I think now that you have read through this post you will have a better understanding of note taking with the Cornell Note system. Although this is my favorite form of taking notes it is not the only. In my next post I will be discussing the basic outline which is great for liner based notes, and also mind mapping which does best when used to capture the big picture and how it relates to the individual pieces of information. I hope you enjoyed this post leave you comments below I would love to hear your thoughts and why not even suggest my next topic. Have a great week!

To Get Things Started

I am a college freshman at Southeast Missouri State University majoring in pre-med. My philosophy behind college is simple, find the best way to make a name for myself while still enjoying life. Okay so it may not sound that simple. You are probably thinking that as a pre-med major I will have absolutely no free time to enjoy myself. Well then I am glad that you found this blog because I will be giving you the tips that I learn as I go through college. That means if you have a problem I am probably dealing with the same thing but the good news is I am looking for the solution. The first problem I encountered in class is that the way I took notes in high school is not going to cut it in college so in the next couple of posts I will be explaining different note taking systems and which ones work best for me in my different classes but first I want to hear the ways you take notes so answer the poll and leave a comment. I am excited to see where this semester takes me and I hope you are too.