“Old Fashioned” Note Taking More Efficient than Computers

According to the Chronicle of Higher Education, students who take notes with a pen or pencil and paper is more likely to benefit in the classroom than those taking notes with their computers. The study will publish in Psychological Science titled “The Pen is Mightier than the Keyboard: Advantages of Longhand Over Laptop Note-taking.”

During the study, students received either a notebook and pen or a laptop (not connected to WiFi) to take notes then were tested on recalling facts and applying concepts. Those who did not use a computer earned higher scores on applying concepts than those who did. The fact recalling test had similar results.

While students with laptops took longer and more detailed notes, they most likely took them mindlessly and indiscriminately. Laptop users focused on taking verbatim notes versus pulling key concepts as with those using longhand notes, thus the lower scores on the concepts test.

How do you take notes? How has your note-taking strategies benefited your learning experiences?

Cornell-styled notes is suggested by universities across the nation including Princeton and Dartmouth. It is an efficient way of note-taking and organization when used correctly.