Much research has been made about whether taking notes by hand is more retentive than taking notes by digital means. One of the most prominent of these studies, which was published in Psychological Science, was made by Pam A. Mueller from Princeton University and Daniel M. Oppenheimer from University of California. The study compared how taking notes by hand influenced learning compared to taking notes on a computer. "When people type their notes, they have this tendency to try to take verbatim notes and write down as much of the lecture as they can," Mueller said in an interview. "The students who were taking longhand notes in our studies were forced to be more selective — because you can't write as fast as you can type. And that extra processing of the material that they were doing benefited them."
Another example of this research is the article named “Banning Laptops in the Classroom”, which was published in Legal Education and written by Kevin Yamamoto from Texas College of Law. In his research, Yamamoto claimed that the students who take notes by hand are more participative in class discussions and they don’t need to revisit the information they learn as much as their peers who use computers, which result in higher exam results. So let’s take a look at the benefits of taking notes by hand in school and business life.
The Pen is Mightier Than the Keyboard
Taking notes helps with active participation, which is one of the most essential parts of learning. When the information learnt is written down by hand, the permanence of information increases. Also, to take notes, we have to put sentences into the right words in our head, which prevents us from forgetting the information and takes us one step closer to learning.
Taking notes by hand is also very useful in learning languages or memorizing certain chunks of text. The words are learnt not by reading and repeating but by taking notes by hand. That is because what the brain really needs to do for information to be permanent is to work with the writing hand integratedly and master the words by repeating the written words via muscle memory. That’s why, compared to taking notes by computers or tablets, taking notes by hand is more advantageous in terms of learning and permanence of the information learnt.
Outliers Notebook is Mightiest
In today’s digital world, one of the prominent reasons of taking notes digitally is the fact that it can be saved and shared quickly. It becomes easier to share the notes when they are taken digitally but it becomes harder to learn the information. Taking notes by hand and sharing them as easily as the digital notes seems like the best option.
Outliers Notebook offers you a solution: you can take your notes old school style, digitize them as PDFs via our free Outliers application and store these files on your smartphones, tablets and computers. This smart notebook, which is a combination of old school and new technology, can be seen as a blend of "vintage" and "modern". While you are learning better by taking notes by hand, you can share your notes that can be stored on your tablet or computer via email, text messages or other mobile applications, and you can upload and store them on cloud services.