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Lecture Tips - How to Get the Most Out of Your Lecture

A class lecture is one of the time-tested ways of disseminating information. To get the most out of your lectures some preparation is needed. This includes reviewing the notes from the last lecture, clarifying doubts if any, and anticipating the issues on which your lecturer will speak. If you are not prepared then the volume of new information will overwhelm you. Attending and concentrating, while your lecturer is delivering the lecture, is important to understand complicated course work and to broaden your knowledge base.

Focus and Listening Skills
To focus and listen to a class lecture you will need to work hard. As you listen to the lecture try to summarize the content of each section and then try to predict what the speaker will touch on next. This will help you to be actively tuned in to the lecture. Traditionally, classroom lectures are a one-way flow, where the professor speaks and the students listen. However, this type of 'lecture' does not achieve what is intended in the first place - 'learning'. For a permanent transfer of knowledge, lectures should attempt at 'active learning'. For complete, active learning students should also analyze, synthesize, and evaluate their lectures. Also read Test Taking and Study Tips to get the most out of the classroom and educational experience.

The Right Way to Take Notes
Good class notes are important for scoring well on your exams. Though your text books will have the information, class notes will elucidate the points and add to the content. To take notes properly you should come prepared to class. The teacher expects you to go through your textbook as she/he will be building on that. Also go through class notes taken earlier, so that you recall what has already been covered. Both these activities will make you ready to understand the present lecture. Keep all materials such as pen, pencil, and note books accessible. While taking down lecture notes you have to be fast. So create your own set of standard abbreviations, look for 'signal statements' (the most important thing is...), and put a '?' against any point that remains unclear. Now comes an important part - one which students usually ignore. Rewrite your notes in proper sentences, clarify what was unclear, and check with other students if you feel that you have left out something. Rewriting your notes is a preparatory method that will not only keep things in order for exam time but also help you recollect the written words.

Recording the Class Lecture
People learn differently; while some learn best by reading, others grasp it better through visuals, and still others are hands-on learners.

Taking notes while your professor gives the lecture involves multitasking - listening and writing - and not everyone may be comfortable with it. Recording the class lecture is a good option. You can use an audio recorder or you can use software that will help you record it on your laptop and take notes with a click. Devices such as SoniClear Enterprise and SoniClear SalesVoice can help you record, take notes, and share them with friends who have missed the session. The file can be converted to MP3 format and shared with others easily.

Some professors podcast their lectures and edit them to include chapters and visuals, so that it becomes complete learning matter. The MP3 file can then be put on a web server, with the relevant link sent to the students.

Interacting During a Lecture
An interactive lecture session is not only essential for a better understanding of the subject under discussion but is sometimes necessary to score well and make an impression. Sometimes you may need to talk in front of a small group or express your opinion in front of the class; you may even be graded for it. You have to be mentally and academically ready to question, answer, analyze, and evaluate. Being interactive in class also gives your teacher the opportunity to understand how well you have grasped the subject matter.

Resources to Take Lecture Notes
You will find many resources on the Internet that will provide you with detailed suggestions about taking lecture notes. One of the most important things about taking notes involves pre-lecture preparation. Preview the subject, so that while the lecture is being given you can concentrate on listening rather than copying it word for word. What you do in the class is 'take' notes, while after class you 'make' notes. While making your notes later, you will need to refer to various sources such as the library, the Internet, your teacher, and also your peer group. The following links will give you more information about taking lecture notes:

USQ.edu
TLC.edu
Teachability.uk
Palgrave.com

Getting the Best Out Of Your Online Class
The main difference between an online lecture and that given in a classroom is the absence of face-to-face interaction. In an online situation the instructor misses the online cues that are given out by students. So if you do not make an attempt to be upfront to clear your doubts or express your views then the instructor will not be able to solve your problem. Hence, more assertiveness and initiative on the part of the learner and the teacher are required to make an online lecture interesting and productive. Also, reading is slower from a screen than from a textbook. To improve reading speed and comprehension check out the following site: Psychtests.com


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