Sunday, 11 August 2013

How to Outline Your Textbooks

Hey everyone!

As you all know, it's back to school time (yay -.- ... ). I'd like to share a couple of tips today on how outline your textbooks. It's a great way to condense the amount of re-reading you'll have to do before your exam time. I generally like to read and outline my text before the course begins and then review the outline during the block. It helps solidify the information.

The more you review, the more you will (theoretically) retain.




WHAT YOU WILL NEED:


  • Textbook
  • Computer with a word processor
    OR
  • Spiral Notebook
  • Pens
  • Highlighters

DEMO:

GRAB THE TEXTBOOK

Refer to your course outline and identify the textbook(s) you wish to outline.

The textbook I am using is "Thomsen. First Principles of Gastroenterology: The Basis of Disease and Approach to Management, 5th ed." This is a required textbook for my gastrointestinal block. After sifting through my course schedule, I've identified the chapters that appear to be most relevant for this block. 


SKIM/REVIEW THE CHAPTER
This will give you an idea of what you will be covering.

If I don't have time to read the entire textbook, I'll simply read over the relevant sections I wish to cover that day.


CAPITALIZE HEADINGS AS SHOWN IN THE TEXTBOOK
This is simply to provide organization and continuity between your textbook notes and the textbook you are outlining.

In the textbook I am currently outlining, the first heading is "Introduction." So I will write down "INTRODUCTION" as my first heading. As well, I will number my headings as that is how they've been outlined in Thomsen's text.

INDENT

When outlining the relevant sections, I will outline them as follows:
--------------------------------------------------------------
-> MAIN TOPIC


  • Point 1
    • Examples/further clarification
--------------------------------------------------------------

Essentially, as you become more detailed, the indentation becomes greater and greater. Skimming/reading the relevant sections of the chapter ahead of time will allow you to efficiently organize your points and examples. 

E.g. 


USE HIGHLIGHTERS
You can jazz up the outline by highlighting important terms.

I will typically create my outline on my PC and then print out the outlines which I keep in duo-tangs, or binders for larger outlines. Once printed, I highlight away.

I hope this helps!

Good luck outlining.

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 Thank you for stopping by!

Reference:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jVrslRCDZSQ

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for this!! Ill use this format for chemistry!!

    ReplyDelete

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