Paper vs Digital Notetaking for Students

Paper vs Digital Notetaking for Students

I'm 99% paperless (the other 1% is out of my control) and take my notes digitally, for the most part, on my Chromebook or Smartphone. I do use a Livescribe pen and notebook sometimes too and I know a lot of people prefer paper notes and planners.

I just saw an article, "Is the pen mightier than the keyboard for students?" that makes a case that students retain more when they take notes on paper and that digital devices, as reported by students themselves, allow for more distractions.

I agree with a lot of this because I see too many students just copy right from digital resources for their "notes" and don't put them in their own words. This means that their brain isn't processing the information, It's the same with clipping things to Evernote. Whenever I clip something, I make some of my own notes on it too. Students also have lots of ways to be distracted with a digital device (as do adults). In the old days, we could doodle or daydream, now you can go online and do anything instead of paying attention.

It's an interesting article that all educators should read and take notice of.


Great Tips, Resources and Ideas for Going Paperless

Lots of Resources to Help You Go Paperless

Lots of Resources for Notetaking

10 Great, Free Apps for Students for Notetaking and Class Planning

Analog (ie paper) resources that work with digital

Getting Students and Teachers Organized - includes some tips for paper based systems

David Andrade is a Educator, Educational Technology Specialist and Education Administrator in CT. Before teaching, David was an Aerospace Engineer for 10 years.He is the author of theEducational Technology Guy blog, where he reviews free educational technology resources for teachers, discusses ways to use technology to improve teaching and learning, and discusses other issues in education. He is also a professional development trainer, educational technology consultant and presenter at conferences. Check out his blog at for more resources, tips, links, information and more. Follow him onTwitterandGoogle+.

Disclaimer: The information shared here is strictly that of the author and does not reflect the opinions or endorsement of his employer.

David Andrade, MS Ed, a former educator, edtech specialist and school district CIO, is the Business Development Manager, Google Services, at CDW•G, a leading provider of integrated information technology solutions. He works with schools and internal teams on services and solutions around their Google environment.