Conventional Note Taking
In this conventional or traditional method, you write or type your notes in “list" style. Whether you use a notebook or your computer, create a template for recording specific information about each resource. Note the essentials like title, publisher, date of publication, author or editor, and the URL if you are using an online resource. Designate categories or headings to help you organize your notes. Choose the most essential and relevant information from each resource. In most cases, you should write information in your own words; however, if a direct quote would be more effective, be sure to cite it properly.
**Beware of plagiarizing!**
You don’t have to write every word when taking notes for a research paper, or even complete sentences. Simply glean enough information in phrases or “chunks" that are relevant for your research. Stay on topic and remember that “less is more" in the sense that you only want validating or corroborating details to support your research paper. It is then up to you to incorporate the information and expound on it.
After you gather information from each resource, you can further refine your notes. Carefully review and evaluate the details from each resource. You may decide to not use some information, or you may choose to do additional research to further develop a weak area.