Your Note-Taking Rescuer

Computer or paper?  This is a question that I start every class off with when deciding how I will take notes.  As a ‘Type A’ person when it comes to school work, I have found that taking notes on a computer is much more easy and effective.  I used Microsoft word—like almost everyone else who types their notes—for the first half the first semester of college I endured, and it just wasn’t exactly what I wanted.  This is when I started using OneNote by Microsoft.  I now consider it a part of my everyday class routine.  Here are some little tips, tricks, and positives about OneNote in the life of a college students.

Screen Shot 2018-02-15 at 9.58.49 AM

Example view of OneNote

  • It saves it for you
    • Something I absolutely love about OneNote is the fact that it is synced to the Cloud.  Because of this, I am able to type with no worries of losing my notes.  We have all been in the position of typing something important and had our laptop die, restart, or simply stopWith OneNote being synced to the Cloud, you don’t have to have any concerns about this. 
      • This being said, OneNote isn’t perfect.  Sometimes the notes do not automatically sync as they should, but OneNote has come up with a good way to notify users.  When typing, if your notes begin to highlight themselves in green this means that they are not being saved to the Cloud and you should sign back into your accounts to ensure saving them.
  • OneNote is fast and organized
    • During lectures, speed and efficiency is a must.  OneNote has many features that allow it to be fast yet organized.  There are all kinds of tools and tricks available, it’s just about finding what works best for you personally.  I like the bullet points, the highlighter, and the fact that you can ‘draw’ on your notes.  There are also ways to show what’s more important than other things, set reminders on certain notes, and even dictate notes while OneNote records them.  There are so many features to OneNote that I am still learning about, so it is definitely a process, but one that is worth learning!
  • It comes free on any Dell laptop and is so easy to use
    • OneNote comes on any dell computer, with no set up required but logging into your account.  It is also so easy to use that I couldn’t imagine using anything else.  All you have to do is open the app and begin typing, without any worries or confusion.


Abi Douglas is a freshman Luckyday Scholar majoring in political science. 

Additional note:
As a student at Southern Miss, OneNote is included with your Office 365 access. Students have access to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, OneNote, and more. For information on how to access Office 365, visit

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