Long Live Pen and Paper! (Or, the Case Against Typing Your Notes)

LONG LIVE PEN AND PAPER! Clicking and clacking away on your laptop keyboard may not be the best way to retain information, UCLA and Princeton researchers suggest. According to Harvard Business Review intern Maggy McGloin, who reviewed their study, “students’ scores differed immensely between longhand and laptop note takers” after they watched TED talks and were asked to recall what they remembered. The problem: laptop note-takers attempt to transcribe everything verbatim—rather than actively listening and capturing the most important points.

McGloin doesn’t go as far to say we should all ditch the laptop; rather, “Write your notes in your own words. It’ll encourage you to process and summarize what is being said rather than just regurgitating it.” (Oh, and here’s another study we’d like to see: whether digital note-taking results in flimsier wrists.)

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