Satish is an attentive student, but he struggles to remember what the teacher teaches in class. He tries taking notes but misses out on a lot of information. Sometimes, he scribbles down notes in a hurry but then finds it difficult to understand them.

Satish’s father enrols his son for a short online course which helps him improve his note-taking skills. Soon Satish learns how to take good notes and his grades started improving significantly.

How to Take Down Important Notes?

Note-taking has always been a key skill for students and professionals. Note-taking helps people retain key pieces of information at classes, meetings, conferences, press conferences, and seminars for later use.

Most people, however, struggle with note-taking simply because they do not know how to write notes.

Here are five tips to make note-taking easier for you:

  1. Prepare

Note-taking might seem like an easy task.  It is, however, a skill that takes some practice to master. The first step is to be prepared.

Before you attend a class, meeting, or webinar, do your homework on the subject. You should review past notes so you can identify new information in the session.

Also, be ready with the stationery and gadgets you need for the note-taking session.


  1. Use keywords

One reason people fail to keep up the pace of note-taking is that they focus on noting down every word and don't make an effort to understand the topic.

This habit not only makes you miss out on words but also makes it difficult to understand the notes later as you are clueless about the topic.

The solution to this problem is to use keyword-based writing. This means that instead of trying to take down every word, you focus on writing headlines and bullet points. This will free up time for you to listen and understand the topic.

Another great tip is to create a shorthand technique where you abbreviate words according to your own understanding. The idea is similar to the classic Pitman’s Shorthand where instead of spelling, words are written based on their sound. This can help you write two or three times faster than normal.

  1. Write by hand

The best way to write notes is by hand. While it is easier and faster to take notes on a laptop, writing by hand ensures a better connection with the topic. You don’t simply type the words away, but you think about them as you make notes by hand.

  1. Make them visually appealing

One of the most effective note-taking tips is to make your notes visually appealing. Having good handwriting, separating notes by writing them on different pages and color-coding topics can make notes legible and easy to recall.

You should also leave adequate margins on the sides to mention relevant topics or sources for the notes. It will help in reviewing or expanding the notes later.


  1. Probe well

Note-taking is not only about jotting down whatever is told. It also involves raising questions and seeking clarifications wherever necessary. You must not lose sight of the fact that notes are only for future reference, whereas the session is to enhance your knowledge on the spot.

Therefore, asking relevant questions and gaining clarity on the topic is essential for taking notes.



To succeed in any professional field, you must know how to make good notes. By learning smart note-taking tips, you can gain a greater understanding of a topic in a class or meeting.

Harappa Education has always emphasized on the importance of note-taking. The Writing Proficiently course can help you sharpen your note-taking skills. The course teaches you about the Pyramid Principle which can help you structure your points while writing notes. 

We are sure that by attending this online course and going through the note-taking tips mentioned in this article, you will be able to transform your note-taking skills and use them to great benefits! 

Explore the skills & topics such as Writing SkillsProcess of WritingHow to Write a Report7 C's of Communication & Elements of Communication from our Harappa Diaries blog section and learn to write proficiently.

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