How to take notes in class| Tips for all the subjects

Note taking in class is very important for effective studies during school or college.

The class notes have many advantages over a text book and will be easy to prepare or revise for your exams.

If in class there are many students it can be noticed that though all students take notes, yet few students latter try to refer to others notes for comparison.

This is because they could not take notes properly or in an understandable and meaningful manner.

So in this article we will be seeing how to takes notes in class with tips for every subject.

How to take notes in a class:

  1. Write the topic (chapter name) as heading for any class.
  2. Include date of the class taken.
  3. If you have more than one teacher for a subject then also note the teachers name who covers the topic or chapter.
  4. Have separate note books for each subject. For each teacher start from different side of the notes, i.e. from backside, front side of notes etc.note taking skills
  5. Always maintain continuity of classes by taking notes immediately after the previous class in the same note book. If you just take notes of all chapters or subjects in notes, it will create a confusion to sort out the specific class notes latter. So use separate note books for each class.
  6. If you find any doubts or did not understand any line or concept, immediately mark the point in the notes to clarify form your teacher at the end of the class or from friends latter
  7. Preferably use note book with unruled (plain) pages and a ball point pen to write. Using pencil for diagrams will be ok and label diagrams with pen.
  8. Try to sit in the first row or benches for better vision of the chalkboard or interactive board used by teacher. Further teacher voice will be clearly audible there.

How to take notes for Physics: In physics one frequently encounters concepts like units of expression, principles, derivation, diagrams, formulas in almost every chapter of topic. So while taking notes give preference to these.

  • Units of expression are to be mentioned as per the topic.
  • Mention the names of scientist responsible for the principle like “newton” inertia, keplers orbits around sun etc.
  • While writing principle be careful with the terms used. Principles are so fine tuned that missing a word can make entire principle non-sense.

Ex: In STP (Standard temperature and pressure) Temperature is 273k while pressure is one atmospheric pressure. If you miss the word one writing the principle, it makes no sense.

  • Taking diagrams is very vital to understand a concept. In drawing try to take every small inclusions in diagram like angles, degrees, arrow marks, pointers etc.
  • In derivation try to take every step of derivation in a separate line. Also give numbers to each line (step) of the derivation.
  •  Use diagrams and formulas in derivations if any for better understanding.
  • Problems: solving problems in physics requires one to understand the question properly. Then applying simple principle with formulas helps solve the problem.

Imagination will be key to solving of the problem.

 How to take notes for chemistry:

Chemistry is vast with diverse branches like organic, inorganic, biochemistry, analytical chemistry, medicinal chemistry etc. Chemistry subject evolve greatly as one goes for higher studies.

Tips to take notes for chemistry is as

  • For any topic write the principle involved, reaction, formulas etc.
  • Take any diagrams involved like salt bridge, or kiln of cement manufacture etc.
  • You will find a series of elements or compounds for every topic, so note down the special properties of those group elements or compounds.
  • Solve problems when explained by teacher.

For general chemistry:

1)      Always note down the scientist name mentioned as a discoverer of the concept or compound etc.

2)      Note type of reaction (acid -base, oxido-reducto type, complexation etc.

3)      Be clear with principles like atomic number, atomic weight, morality, normality etc.

4)      Note down properties of individual molecules like NaOH, H2So4 sort of.

For Organic chemistry:

1)      Note down the type or class of compound you are listening to. With its Nomenclature (standard name).

2)      Note down the molecular structure for the class of compounds. The following compounds will have structure similar to lead molecule or basic moiety.

3)      Write the possible reactions of the class of compounds with acids, bases, heavy metals etc.

4)      Note uses of the said class of compounds.

For analytical chemistry:

  1. Note down the name of analytical techniques.
  2. Its principle of how a compound is analyzed
  3. Requirements of the procedure.
  4. Types of compounds which can be analyzed by the technique.
  5. Formulas used and units to represent the data arrived by the technique.
  6. Any graphs needed in analysis.


  • Note down the type of chapter you are listening to like algebra, trigonometry etc.
  • Write all the possible formulas with diagram representation or tables for the said chapter. Using these formulas one may need to solve the formulas of the chapter.
  • Note down the theorems with the name of person who discovered it.
  • Solve problems as guided by teacher in your notes.
  • Problems will be first simple and more typical and complex as you move one so write them one below the other.

For Anatomy: Anatomy is a bit hard subject as one needs to remember a lot of subject along with some Greek evolved terminology. Since it is a vast subject which requires memorization for better performance, one need

  • Draw the diagrams of the anatomical regions with proper labeling of parts for better memory.
  • Write down below the diagram an explanation of the said anatomical part.
  • Its functions and uses to the body and physiology.
  • In some concepts like hormones, CNS function, one can make a table for effect of each hormone, its origin, function etc. If CAN, part of CNS and its innervations to the different body regions and functions.
  • Note down name of scientist involved in the discovery etc.

For biology: Biology includes both plants and animals. It is very vast with many concepts to memorize. It also diversifies as microbiology, biotechnology etc.

  • Note down the evolution paths like chordates, invertebrates, vertebrates etc in zoology.
  • For botany the classification or taxonomy is vital to remember as any future studies of plants will involve mentioning the family, species etc.
  • Note the region or location of where the organism or plant is found.
  • Any uses from the animal or plant, their anatomical differences
  • How they survive, protect them, mode of reproduction etc.
  • Concepts of hybridization, breeding can be easily understood by diagrams.

For microbiology, biotechnology: These subjects are biology related with applications for humans.

  1. Note the concepts first like immunology, fermentation, sterilization, diagnosis etc.
  2. For study of microbes like bacteria, virus, fungi, algae etc. you need to note down, class of evolution, their shapes, types, body structure with diagram and uses of those structure for the organism.
  3. In application based concepts like immunology, fermentation, sterilization, note the principle, requirements, application and uses of the concepts.

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