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Keeping records and making notes have always been an activity of wise people. They preserve important ideas and facts for future consultation. Note taking methods have changed drastically in the past few years. Different theories on various note taking strategies have been given by people. Charting, mind mapping, sentence method, Cornell and outlining are some prominent means of jotting down essential notes.
Charting method of taking notes is very commonly found in books. You draw charts with a set number of rows and columns. You give headings to each row and column according to the data you are entering. This method is particularly used to record properties of certain materials or to give comparison between two or more quantities.
Another technique where in you draw a big circle in the centre of the page and write your main idea in it is the mind mapping technique. From the central circle you stretch lines in all directions on which you write down the sub headings. These sub headings let you explain your idea a little more.
Sentence method is the simplest way of taking notes. It requires no proper rules and regulations. All you do is make plain sentences, starting a new one whenever a fresh idea is being introduced.
Cornell method is used very frequently. According to it you draw a line 2.5 inches from the left hand side of the page and 6 inches from the right hand side. On the right side of the margin line you write detailed notes. And on the left side you note important keywords to highlight the idea being discussed on the other side.
Outline method is also very simple and normally used in offices and academic institutes. The general or the basic idea is given in the first line on the extreme left side of the page and the sub ideas or parts of the main idea are given in later sentences starting with a gap from the left margin or an indent. For example:
The main idea is in the first line and
Apart from these methods there are some note taking methods that require computer. Online note taking or recording notes in some software are both very efficient strategies and are now regularly being used at many workplaces, hospitals and educational institutes.