Charting note-taking method: a guide for dummies

By Marco Chase, Updated on Sat 1st February 2020

Note-taking should be easy, efficient and effective. Most people would just jot down notes without proper structure and in long form sentences. Don’t do this, even if the content is heavy, your notes should be quick to write and quick to scan. This is where the charting method comes in.

Ok but give me an example of Charting

Charting Note Example

How do you effectively use the charting method?

Use it when you are revising and know you’ll be tested on facts and relationships or when the content is heavy and presented quickly to you. Don’t use it to make notes for a lecture on the fly, however is it useful for creating a quick overview of the lecture.

What to avoid when using the charting method?

  • Don’t use during lectures but to summarise lecture notes
  • Make sure columns are wide enough, one trick is to rotate your paper sideways so you have more room per column
  • Don’t use it if you don’t know the content beforehand, this will result in a lot of writing squished/scribbling out. Overall making your notes a nightmare to read.