Notetaking

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Note-taking is the receiving of other people's ideas from speeches, books and other forms of media, and organising them into a structure that reflects their original thought. Note-taking should be supplemented with the note-taker's own thoughts.

THE FOUR MAIN FUNCTIONS OF NOTES

Mnemonic - Analytic - Creative - Conversational.

Mnemonic 1

Sadly, most students in school and universities around the world seem to thinM that notes are nothing more than a memory aid. Their only concern is that! their notes should enable them to remember what they have read just longl enough to pass their exams, after which the information can be happily for-1 gotten. As we have seen, memory is indeed a major factor but by no means thel only one. Other functions, such as analysis and creativity, are equally important.1 The Mind Map is a particularly effective mnemonic device for all the reasons! outlined in the next chapter, 13. As a note-taking technique, it has none of thel disadvantages of standard linear note-taking, as described in Chapter 3 (page! 49). Instead, it offers all the advantages of a method that works in harmony I with your brain, utilising and releasing the full range of its capabilities. !

Analytic

When taking notes from lectures or from written material, it is essential first of all to identify the underlying structure of the information being presented. Mind Mapping can help you extract the Basic Ordering Ideas and hierarchies from linear information.

Creative

The best notes will not only help you remember and analyse information, they will also act as a springboard for creative thought.

Mind Maps combine notes taken from the external environment (lectures, books, journals and the media) with notes made from the internal environment (decision-making, analysis and creative thought).

Conversational

When you take Mind Map notes from a lecture or book, your notes should record all the relevant information from that source. Ideally, they should also include the spontaneous thoughts that arise in your mind while listening to the lecture or reading the book. In other words your Mind Map should reflect the conversation between your intellect and that of the speaker or author. Special colour or symbol codes can be used to distinguish your own contribution to the exchange of ideas.

If the lecture or book happens to be badly organised or badly expressed, your Mind Map will reflect that lack of clarity. This may result in a messy-looking Mind Map but it will also reveal the source of the confusion. You will therefore e a much better grip on the situation than linear note-takers who disguise „.eir confusion in pages of neatly written but functionally useless lines and sts.

The Mind Map thus becomes a powerful tool, both for gathering information from others and for assessing the quality of their thinking.

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