Note-taking Strategies for Success

Students must engage in active learning and accept that learning is always an interactive process. Correspondingly, taking good notes require students to be fully engaged in their education. Once a student has mastered effective notetaking, they will find that their academic performance improves. The tips below can assist students in becoming an effective notetaker.

  • Decide what note-taking method works best for your learning style. Examples include the Cornell Method and Concept Maps.
  • If a mobile device is permitted in the classroom, consider using a mobile application. Examples include Evernote, Microsoft OneNote, Apple Notes, and Google Keep .
  • Sit in the front of the class. In order to take good notes, you must see and hear clearly.
  • Transcribe or write down important concepts in your own words.
  • Date and title each set of notes.
  • Engage in active reading. Do not just highlight words. Instead, jot down keywords and their definitions.
  • During or after a lecture, ask for clarification. If you fear you did not hear a portion of the lecture or need further assistance to grasp concepts, raise your hand and ask the lecturer to expound on the information previously shared.
  • Pay attention to the instructor’s verbal cues. Watch for lists  including, but not limited to  “the following 3 steps” or “the 3 major causes” and listen closely  for summaries signaled by words such as “consequently” or “hence”.
  • Jot down the information you can’t obtain elsewhere. The slideshow presentation includes an overview of topics and basic concepts, but you will want to capture  the important points the speaker verbally shares with the audience.
  • Make it visual. Include images, symbols, or diagrams to aid your understanding.
  • Clarify diagrams by writing down their meaning or the major takeaways.
  • Take notes in complete thoughts, but use familiar abbreviations and symbols to save time.
  • Review your notes after class and immediately address any gaps in your notes by reviewing course literature.
  • Include important examples and questions you may have at the time.
  • Exchange and discuss notes with your classmates.
  • Create flash cards from your notes for use during future study sessions.

For further assistance and more student success tips, contact us at Earn to Learn FL.

Transient Student Basics

Transient students are students presently enrolled at one postsecondary institution while choosing to take a course at another college or university. The end goal is to take the course credits completed at the host institution back to the home institution. This is a strategy used by many students to advance their academic plan.

Prior to becoming a transient student, review the following information to ensure you are aware of the participation requirements and your responsibilities:

  • Transient students are non-degree seeking students. If you are seeking a degree program and ultimately postsecondary credentials from the host  institution, you are instead a transfer student.
  • Transient students enroll at the host institution for a finite period. Typically, the host institution will permit the guest student to register for a single semester at a time.
  • Await final approval of the transient student request prior to registering at the host institution. Both the home and host institution must approve your request.
  • If attending a state-funded institution in Florida, you may complete a transient form on the Florida Shines website .
  • Students attending out-of-state schools or private institutions in Florida, must contact the Registrar’s Office at their home institution to inquire about the transient student process.
  • Institutions often require their students complete a certain percentage of coursework at the home institution. Students must familiarize themselves with the school’s requirements to ensure all transient courses will apply to their degree completion plan.
  • Students are unable to receive federal student aid at two institutions simultaneously. Therefore, students are financially liable for courses taken at another institution and must pay the course fees at the host institution. Likewise, residency is determined by the residency status at the student’s home institution.
  • The desired course at the host institution may have prerequisites. Therefore, it is prudent to consult with an academic advisor and seek approval for registration.
  • Transient student enrollment is subject to the availability of faculty, space and facilities. Plan a semester ahead to secure a seat in the desired course.
  • Upon course completion at the host institution, students must ensure their transcripts are sent to their home institution.
  • Enrollment as a non-degree seeking transient student does not imply a right to future admission as a regular student.

For further assistance and more student success tips, contact us at Earn to Learn FL.

We have some great news to share!

This month 40 young men and women have stepped up to give their time and talent to serve our communities for the next year as AmeriCorps members. The reality of these emerging young professionals in service is distinctly juxtaposed against the images of other young people featured daily during the 24-hour news cycle.

The 40 AmeriCorps members deployed by Earn to Learn FL this month will take this pledge:
I will get things done for America – to make our people safer, smarter, and healthier.
I will bring Americans together to strengthen our communities.
Faced with apathy, I will take action.
Faced with conflict, I will seek common ground.
Faced with adversity, I will persevere.
I will carry this commitment with me this year and beyond.
I am an AmeriCorps member, and I will get things done.

These committed young women and men will serve as near peer coaches for postsecondary success. The pledge they take will be fulfilled by empowering high school students from income challenged families to successfully complete high school prepared for higher education success. It’s an enormous challenge, but I can assure you these AmeriCorps members are up to the task.

Continued pandemic-induced isolation, along with other stresses, means virtual success coaching will play a critical role to support students’ persistence, retention and completion of high school and higher education or technical skills training. Underprivileged students will be coached to develop better personal finance habits and learn what it takes to be a success in business and life.

Our AmeriCorps members are currently enrolled, or recent graduates, of our state universities and colleges such as Florida Gulf Coast University, University of South Florida and Florida Southwestern State College. They will serve in Collier, Charlotte, Hendry, Hillsborough, and Lee counties. During their year of service, the AmeriCorps members will gain valuable skills and professional experience.

The AmeriCorps members, sponsored by Earn to Learn FL and Volunteer Florida ( , will each be serving 900 hours with a $9,000 stipend for their 12-month service, plus they will earn an additional education stipend of over $3,000 at the end of their completed service. The education award may be used to pay educational expenses at eligible post-secondary institutions, including many technical schools and G.I. Bill approved programs, or to repay qualified student loans.

Join me in taking regular breaks from the 24-hour new cycle to catch a glimpse of these 40 AmeriCorps members in service to “make our people safer, smarter, and healthier.” You’ll recognize them proudly wearing their AmeriCorps tshirt.

Your ongoing financial support to leverage our AmeriCorps Florida federal grant makes it possible to deploy 40 AmeriCorps members for 12 months of service to students this fall. with a total program budget for this year of over $540,000. We invite you to learn more by visiting our fundraising page for AmeriCorps Florida by clicking hereClick HERE to see our major Near Peer Coaching for Postsecondary Success underwriters for 2020.