Every once in a while the low-tech tool can prove to be the most effective. According to research from Princeton University, students were given either a laptop or pen and paper with which to take notes during a lecture.
Afterward, all students were tested on comprehension, without time to review their notes. The students who used pen and paper scored significantly better on the test of comprehension and memory. Laptop users did poorly.
Researchers found that the difficulty for laptop users was transcribing what they were hearing, rather than processing and taking notes. Apparently, the mind goes on autopilot while transcribing and memory suffers (Ben Spencer, “If You Want Total Recall, Use Old-fashioned Pen and Paper (Not a Laptop),” The Daily Mail at DailyMail.co.uk, April 25, 2014).
Not convinced? Experiment the next time you are listening to a class or a sermon, see which works the best for you! Discovering how you process information best will help you become an effective student, retain knowledge longer, and become more productive.