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I find that many of my developmental students, regardless of whether they
are using a laptop or taking longhand notes, take too many notes and take
them on the wrong things (e.g. they write down the examples instead of the
concepts). When they learn strategies to decide what they should take notes
on and stop trying to write down everything the teacher says, grades begin
to improve. Even so, students who take notes on a laptop also sometimes get
distracted by the red and green lines of MSWord and try to correct their
spelling and grammar as they type. This practice distracts them from
actually absorbing the content. I think when we write notes longhand, we
don't worry so much about format and we have no visible little lines
telling us that we did something wrong. I wonder if turning off grammar and
spell check while taking notes would alter the findings at all.

Larina Warnock
Developmental Studies Instructor
WH214
541-917-2311

We read to know we are not alone. -C.S. Lewis


On Tue, Apr 1, 2014 at 7:02 AM, Nic Voge <[log in to unmask]> wrote:

> Like all experimental designs, the application to practice is
> under-conceptualized, but this is an intriguing finding. It assumes that
> elaborated, organized encoding happens best at the time of exposure, rather
> than, say, after class--which is dubious--and makes no account of the
> "life" of the notes after 30 minutes.
>
> Nonetheless, it speaks powerfully to docile, mindless "engagement" in
> class.
>
> Best,
> Nic
> __________________________________
> Dominic (Nic) J. Voge
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> On Apr 1, 2014, at 9:49 AM, Norman Stahl wrote:
>
>  March 28, 2014 by Danya Perez-Hernandez
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>> Comments (30)
>>
>>
>> Taking Notes by Hand Benefits Recall, Researchers Find
>>
>> Distractions posed by laptops in the classroom have been a common
>> concern, but new research suggests that even if laptops are used strictly
>> to take notes, typing notes hinders students' academic performance compared
>> with writing notes on paper with a pen or pencil.
>> Daniel M. Oppenheimer, an associate professor of psychology at the
>> University of California at Los Angeles, and Pam Mueller, a graduate
>> student at Princeton University, studied the effects of students'
>> note-taking preferences. Their findings will be published in a paper in
>> Psychological Science called "The Pen Is Mightier Than the Keyboard:
>> Advantages of Longhand Over Laptop Note-Taking."
>> The researchers' goal was to figure out whether typing notes--which is
>> becoming increasingly popular--has any direct effect on a students' ability
>> to understand a lecture.
>> In a series of studies, the researchers provided students with laptops or
>> with pen and paper to take notes. (The computers were disconnected from the
>> Internet.) Students were then tested on how well they could recall facts
>> and apply concepts. During the first test, students were told to "use their
>> normal classroom note-taking strategy." Some typed, and others wrote
>> longhand. They were tested 30 minutes later.
>> The researchers aimed to measure the increased opportunity to
>> "mindlessly" take verbatim notes when using laptops.
>> "Verbatim note-taking, as opposed to more selective strategies, signals
>> less encoding of content," says the researchers' report. Although laptop
>> users took almost twice the amount of notes as those writing longhand, they
>> scored significantly lower in the conceptual part of the test. Both groups
>> had similar scores on the factual test.
>> In another part of the study, some laptop users were instructed to avoid
>> taking verbatim notes. Instructors explained that "people who take class
>> notes on laptops when they expect to be tested on the material later tend
>> to transcribe what they're hearing without thinking about it much." But
>> members of that group received lower scores in both conceptual and factual
>> tests than did their longhand counterparts.
>> "While more notes are beneficial, at least to a point, if the notes are
>> taken indiscriminately or by mindlessly transcribing content, as is more
>> likely the case on a laptop, the benefit disappears," says the report.
>>
>>
>> Norman Stahl
>> [log in to unmask]
>>
>>
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