Is Writing Notes by Hand Better Than Typing?

“If you need to remember something, write it. Writing notes by hand is much better for long-term memory of ideas, or conceptual information.”

“Here is what the research showed.

Students who type notes on a keyboard often transcribe, or write down what the professor says word-for-wordThey may write without really thinking about what they are writingThese electronic notes contained more words. But scientists say it leads to “mindless transcription. “Transcription means to record something exactly as you hear it.

Howeverstudents taking notes long-hand, or by writing themneed to first process the information they hearThen they record just the main points, or summarizeThey use fewer words. This is because people usually write slower than they type. This process of summarizing information leads to a deeper understandingsay the researchers.

In the studystudents listened to a teacher and then took a test.  Some took notes by typing on a computer. The others took notes by writing them down

Both groups performed about the same in remembering facts. But students who typed their notes did much worse on conceptual questions. The sequestions required them to understand an idea.

Those who typed also could not stop transcribing even after they were told to try to avoid it. So even if you want to stop typing what you hear word-for-wordyou might not be able to.

Alsoresearchers found that those who wrote their notes remembered conceptual information better a week laterResearchers believe that the students who wrote notes long-hand had a deeper understanding of ideas and concepts.”

via Is Writing Notes by Hand Better Than Typing?.

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