Pasadena City College, Home of the PCC Lancers


Your own notes can be the most valuable study tool you possess. 

Below is an example of the Cornell Note-Taking method, which has been utilized by scholars for many years.  This method allows you:

  • to take notes in your own words and then
  • use them to formulate questions you may have about the material
  • create useful study sheets.
Cue Column Notetaking Column

Use this space to add information you may initially have missed, note any questions you may have about the material, or make notes to yourself for study later.

  1. Record-Use this section to take notes during the lecture, being careful to avoid trying to copy what the instructor says word for word.
  2. Questions-As soon as possible after class, look over your notes for any confusing/unclear information and note this in the cue column.
  3. Recite-Using key words and terms, recite aloud, in your own words, the main ideas, definitions, or facts listed in your notes.
  4. Reflect-Reflect on your notes and try to connect the ideas from the day’s lecture to bigger concepts or an overall "big picture." Try asking yourself questions like:"What is the value or significance of this information? What principle are these facts based on? How can I apply this information to my studies and how does that fit in with what I already know?"
  5. Review-Spend at least 10 minutes a day reviewing all your previous notes. This will make the knowledge much more accessible when you need to use it for classroom work or test preparation.




After class, use this space at the bottom of each page to summarize the notes on that page.