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How can I get credit for my lesson notes?

Being able to study text lessons and take quality notes for future reference is essential to becoming an excellent student. Excellent note-taking makes effective exam preparation possible. It takes time for students to develop their note-taking skills and establish a routine that allows them to earn high scores on every exam.

To gain credit for many lessons, students must provide evidence that they have completed all of the assigned reading and that they have taken careful notes. This is an important exercises not only because it gives you the opportunity to develop this study skill, but also because it allows a teacher to help you learn to do so.

Here’s how to provide evidence of your lesson notes:

1. Hand-written Notes

As you study, take notes with a pencil. Often, you will need to erase and re-write what you’ve written to make it more organized and concise. After you’ve finished your notes, scan your papers, and save them as a PDF document. Then, upload them to Google Drive (or another document hosting service) and paste a link to the document in the “Exercises” submission box on the Study Center.

Below is a copy of my notes from one of my courses at Harvard University, which I recommend you use as a model. My note-taking method has allowed me to earn perfect scores on many university exams. With many online exams today, college professors allow students to use notes, but set strict time limits on exams. (I used the notes below for an online exam with 20 questions and 2 essays, with a 75 minute time limit. I finished in 73 minutes.)

Remember that the purpose of this submission is to prove that you have studied the lesson carefully and worked to summarize all of the important content with organized and concise notes. Simply submitting a page with random information written down will not be approved. Note in the example provided below that my notes are detailed, but organized and concise. This is the challenge of note-taking. It takes time to take notes like this, but when you have done so, studying for exams becomes very easy.

Note: The pages of student work should be collected into a single document, which is why scanning and saving as a PDF is required. The free smartphone app “Adobe Scan” makes this very easy.

2. Typed Work

If you prefer typing and choose to take notes in MS Word or Google Docs, the final document can be saved as a PDF and shared as explained above.

REMEMBER: It is the student’s responsibility to prove that he has studied all lesson content carefully and has reduced the lesson content to organized and concise notes for future study.

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