napoleon-imperial-guardDon’t waste time rewriting the same long names and words in your notes. Create a key with your abbreviations for the particular set of notes your taking. I usually put this key on the first page of notes in the upper right. I might start off with several key terms that I know will crop up, but I usually add others as the class progresses.

Example:

N – Napoleon

W – Wellington

Br – British

Fr – French

Wl – Waterloo

Now, instead of having to quickly write, “Wellington and British achvd great victory over Napoleon and French at Waterloo,” you could write “W and Br achvd great victory over N and Fr at Wl.”

BONUS: As soon as the prof [hidepost]pauses to take a breath, go back with different colored markers and highlight or circle the different names/terms using your own code. For example, anything that has to do with the Brits I might circle in red, and anything to do with the French, I could circle in blue.

And don’t forget to leave out vowels if you’re trying to get a lot of info down in a hurry. If the prof says…

“On the 18th of June 1815, Napoleon was driven from the field of Waterloo by the British, under the Duke of  Wellington, and by the Prussians, under Blucher.”

You could write…

“Wl, 6/18/1815, N drvn frm fld by Br (W) & by Prssns (Blucher).”

As always, it’s vital to go back and review those notes immediately after class. That way, if you abbreviate too much, you’ll be able to go back and fill in the gaps while the lecture is still fresh in your memory.”[/hidepost]

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