Jamil Santos, Correspondent | Negosentro.com |
In 2017, technology dominates our lives. It is pervasive in all areas of our lives and we rarely find it necessary to get a pen and paper out anymore. I suppose some people might say what’s the point? Why not write what you need in a word document and file it safely on a computer? Of course, this is convenient, but handwriting has important cognitive benefits that you may not be aware of.
Students are particularly fond of their laptops and we are seeing more of them in classrooms around the world and much less pen and paper. Students see them as convenient and they can generally type more quickly than they can write. However, research has shown that even though you write less by hand, you remember more. Handwritten notes are better for both long-term and short-term memory. The reason being that handwriting requires different cognitive processing and has different consequences for learning.
Another benefit of handwritten notes over typed notes is that they’re easier to summarise. Laptop note-takers tend to write lectures word for word rather than reframing it in their own words. An additional problem with laptops is that students can lose focus. They generally only spend 60% of the time taking notes and the other 40% is wasted on websites and programs unrelated to the lecture taking place.
No matter what way students take notes, there are still some important things to remember when in class. Listen carefully and develop a note-taking method that works for you. Try to go to class with a positive attitude, as if you don’t, it will be difficult to focus on the task in hand and you will leave the lecture having learned very little.
This infographic from Study Medicine Europe explores why handwriting is still an important skill. Rediscover your love of pen and paper today!