Does anyone else find writing notes to seriously holdup study time?

I find that I can spend a solid 2hrs of writing notes without progressing much through the material I'm reading. I'm starting to wonder if I should just not bother as I can't say it helped me with my other certs. For ITIL Foundation I wrote no notes and got on fine, I did write notes for the 98-349 but I didn't even review them. I'm going for the 98-366 and I'm considering just watching the videos and reading the official book without taking any notes..

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  • jamesleecolemanjamesleecoleman Posts: 1,899Member
    I usually just type up the notes or used the 3m tapes that you can put on paper to mark important spots. Highlighter helps too.
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  • MooseboostMooseboost Posts: 764Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    I usually watch videos twice. The first time I don't take any notes. The second time I will take down what I think are important details. A lot of times after I have covered a whole section I will combine my notes into my own study guide. So I watch the material twice and write twice. This has worked fairly well for me.
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  • bender_fender100bender_fender100 Posts: 89Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    I feel like I take too many notes right now. When I was going through one of the CBT Nuggets videos, I took six pages of notes alone from that. When I'm reading, I take even more notes and I've been trying to cut down on the amount of writing I do. I'm trying other approaches, like watching certain videos more than once if it's a harder topic and just jotting down key points.
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  • markulousmarkulous Posts: 2,376Member ■■■■■■■■□□
    I try not to take many notes because I don't feel that a bunch really benefit me. I have a decent memory and if there are too many notes it kind of defeats the purpose since I'll likely have a book or something that already has all of that info.
  • TechGuru80TechGuru80 Posts: 1,535Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Depending on the certification it can take a while. My thought is that on some certifications especially the ones I do not use everyday, the better notes I take the better I can refresh my memory down the road. Also taking notes helps with retention. Remember some of this stuff will be critical in either your current job or future job so you might as well take it seriously.
  • OctalDumpOctalDump Posts: 1,722Member
    I only ever take notes when I am sitting in a class being talked at, and then I just write brief comments next to the material in the book/handout.

    I think the time is better spent reading/watching/listening to multiple sources. Notes are pointless unless you actually go back and read them, so the time you spend making notes and re-reading, you may as well just read another book on the same stuff.
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  • PseudonymPseudonym Senior Member Posts: 327Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    Yeah, I've had this same problem. I don't think notes have had any positive effect on my learning, and I never go back to look at them. Usually cause I've written the whole book out. I think what I'm going to do in future is:

    1. Read book
    2. Take practice tests to get a feel of what kind of questions there'll be and how they'll be asked.
    3. Read book again and take notes sparsely
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  • joeswfcjoeswfc Posts: 118Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    Mooseboost wrote: »
    I usually watch videos twice. The first time I don't take any notes. The second time I will take down what I think are important details. A lot of times after I have covered a whole section I will combine my notes into my own study guide. So I watch the material twice and write twice. This has worked fairly well for me.

    I do the same as you, but then I watch them a third time and follow them along in my lab. So 3 times altogether :)
  • Chev ChelliosChev Chellios Posts: 341Member
    Understand where everyone is coming from but I find that writing notes helps me comprehend the material better- something gratifying nowdays hand writing notes too as I find staring at a screen reading lots of stuff to be unproductive but that's just me.
  • TechGuru80TechGuru80 Posts: 1,535Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Pseudonym wrote: »
    Yeah, I've had this same problem. I don't think notes have had any positive effect on my learning, and I never go back to look at them. Usually cause I've written the whole book out. I think what I'm going to do in future is:

    1. Read book
    2. Take practice tests to get a feel of what kind of questions there'll be and how they'll be asked.
    3. Read book again and take notes sparsely
    You need to practice note taking skills then. Identify what is important...not every word.

    There are studies that show taking notes help with comprehension...I'm sure the studies were done by some very intelligent people...
  • PseudonymPseudonym Senior Member Posts: 327Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    I actually have practiced note taking skills, and read quite deeply into the subject actually. You shouldn't believe everything you read in 'studies' though. Everyone is different and 'studies' very frequently fail to accurately represent a realistic environment and can't possibly take every single variable into account.

    Also, those 3 steps are part of a process of identifying what's important. Did you not garner that from the post?
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  • Legacy UserLegacy User Posts: 0Unregistered / Not Logged In
    I do agree that note taking does make a 30 minute video into an hour process with frequent pause and play or makes reading a couple of pages twice as long. But while it does take a long process as mentioned in an earlier post I compile my own study guide as well in my own words. Basically explaining it in a way I know I will understand if I ever need a refresher. I then transfer my written notes to a word document than upload it so I'm not ever looking for the notebook that goes over a topic which is something I've gone crazy looking for many times.

    Also, when I read any correlating books I jot down anything vital or fun fact that wasn't mentioned in a video or another way to explain something that wasn't clear to me the first time. I find its a bit over kill to have to different sets of notes explaining the same thing from multiple sources. I used to do that but deterred from that route recently. Depending what I'm studying I also make a **** sheet in notepad for commands and explaining what it does and what to watch out for as a quick reference to be used during work.
  • bpennbpenn Posts: 499Member
    The only time I take notes is when I read a chapter/book and NONE of it sticks. Learning Java comes to mind. I usually write down all key terms and anything that the author bolds or highlights that I feel is something I didnt learn the first time around.
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  • G.O.A.TG.O.A.T Posts: 138Member
    I think I may print the exam objectives then write small notes about each of the key technologies bur I'm going to rely on memory for 80% of the exam and see how I go. I think it does depend on the exam you take as someone else mentioned.
  • CertifiedMonkeyCertifiedMonkey Posts: 172Member ■■□□□□□□□□
    When I read through a book, I like to create my own questions in Quizlet and write a short answer + the page number (in case I want to reread). Having to think about how to word the question helps for me. Another thing that I just started doing (inspired by Glen E. Clarke's N+ book) is listing out the objectives in a table and putting beginner | intermediate | advanced next to the objectives. On the first read through, I usually mark beginner. After I review and watch some videos I mark intermediate. When I feel comfortable "doing it" and "explaining it" I mark the advanced box. Helps me locate weak areas. Can be a bit of a waste of time though. icon_lol.gif
  • varelgvarelg Posts: 790Banned
    So I guess the real issue isn't time spent on generating notes but not willing to go back and read them. And so, what makes you not go back and read the notes you wrote?
    Retaining newly gained knowledge is important and that's where writing notes come in.
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  • RomBUSRomBUS Posts: 699Member ■■■■□□□□□□
    I feel like I take TOO many notes as well. I include pictures, examples, scenarios, excerpts from the video or book. My study notes usually end up being 10+ pages
  • ChitownjediChitownjedi Chasing down my dreams. Posts: 575Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    Interesting topic, I believe notes are the reason I have delayed and not gotten back into the swing of quite a few things. I have ONENOTE opened all the time and the time I spend organizing, sectioning, cutting, pasting, highlighting, seems like it takes up 80% of the actual time I would dedicate to learning new things, and have definitely poured water on my flame to engage in finishing the CCNP, and swinging into some high level security stuff.

    The ideal of taking down constant notes just might have been my biggest deterrent, and this thread might have given me an epiphany on why I have loathed getting back into turning up to 10 and getting back into the swing. Just might give the note less reviewing more of a try at least the first 2 times I cover the material, and just note take on stuff that keeps leaking away.

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  • DoubleNNsDoubleNNs Posts: 2,013Member ■■■■■□□□□□
    OctalDump wrote: »
    Notes are pointless unless you actually go back and read them

    Actually, it's been proven that you'll retain the material better if you handwrite notes on it, even if you never go back and read those notes every again. This is most effective if you're paraphrasing the material and filtering out the most important parts and only taking notes on those.
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  • Danielh22185Danielh22185 Posts: 1,195Member
    My method =

    1.) Watch Video first, take notes over video content (usually brief by design anyway as there isn't as much content covered in a single video as there is in a large segment / chapter of reading)
    2.) Read the chapter in full, highlighting areas I feel is important for retention.
    3.) Write notes over that chapter based on the areas I have highlighted.

    ^^ Repeat steps 1-3 until all content is covered

    4.) Once completed reading all content in the books / Video watching use notes as primary study resource
    5.) Go back through each page of notes and create page summaries of content previously notated (I purposely only take my initial notes on the right side of a composite note book, leaving the back side blank for these page summaries I later create. I also do drawings / etc on these page summaries.
    6.) Use the long / short version of my notes as review for final prep. Create flash cards off of the back side page summaries.
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  • varelgvarelg Posts: 790Banned
    Maybe the language in which some study books are written forces you to write a lot of notes. Particularly the "if and only if" style in which quite a few manpages in Linux are written.
    I am right now preparing for a practical exam and in a way I can avoid having to deal with material written in such a style, so my notes are meaningful to me, instead of to the censor that wrote those official guides. But if I was going for a multiple-choice exam I may have not had that luxury and would be forced to deal with the official wording, hence generate notes in that style.
    I had a chance to open a few Cisco official guides and oh man... I guess the catch is to write notes that are meaningful to you.
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  • fuz1onfuz1on Posts: 961Member
    It does (especially when you have to pause videos and rewind - at times) but it also helps me study smarter. In this day and age, I still take hand notes to remember stuff. I tried typing and using a pad for school but I just wouldn't retain the info as well.
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  • yellowpadyellowpad Posts: 191Member ■■■□□□□□□□
    i find it easier....and remember better having a pdf and use a highlighter tool. by the time, i finish the book....i would have a very colorful pdf.
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  • OctalDumpOctalDump Posts: 1,722Member
    DoubleNNs wrote: »
    Actually, it's been proven that you'll retain the material better if you handwrite notes on it, even if you never go back and read those notes every again. This is most effective if you're paraphrasing the material and filtering out the most important parts and only taking notes on those.

    I remain dubious. Going back to the research isn't helping me either at this point. There's too much nuance in it all. I think that there is probably a difference between note taking from books and note taking from lectures/videos. If I discover anything useful, I'll post it here.

    Probably what is important is actually understanding the material. Paraphrasing, as you might do in notes, or explaining it to another person probably help this process. It's easy to think "yeah, I get that" without actually testing yourself. That sort of encompasses two of the stages of learning: learning activity and evaluation.
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