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The Digital Student

Digital Learning


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How take the best notesundefined

You have so many methods of note taking available to you.

  • Traditional paper and pen note taking. 
  • Audio recording your lectures (not strictly speaking note taking but a different option). 
  • Digital note taking using OneNote.
  • A hybrid method of all three!

If you want advice on how to take notes then you might like our guide to note taking.

Paper and pen vs digital

This can be seen as the traditional method for taking notes. obvious advantages are that it is pretty low tech and can be done anywhere but there are some drawbacks. If you have a lots of notes then will start to amass lots of paper. For many people this can be both hard to organise and cumbersome to carry around. so what are the advantages of going digital?

  • if your notes are on OneNote and linked to your OneDrive you can access you notes anywhere you can access the internet and you iPad. No more heavy bags full of paper notebooks!
  • digital notes can be amended as many times as you like, no more scruffy notes with lots of errors and crossing out!
  • you can keyword search your own notes. Have you ever been in a situation where you have a vague memory of something you lecturer had said in a past session? With paper notes you would have to manually read through them all, but if your notes are digital you can search through all your notes instantly. In OneNote you can search your notes at any time by clicking on the spyglass.


Microsoft OneNote undefined

OneNote is available as part of your Future Facing Learning Toolkit. Here are some instructional videos on how to use it.

Alternative options

Reviewing lectures

Many of your lectures may now be recorded using panopto for you to rewatch. These will be made available through your Blackboard module. 


Audio recording

There are two scenarios where audio recording might be a great option.

  1.  You might chose to record the audio from your lectures so you can listen back to them later.
  2.  You might want to augment your own written notes with you own audio recording. You can add your own short audio summary of any new concepts learned after a lecture, then add it to your OneNote classbook. 

Here a is short video of how to add audio clips to you notes using OneNote.

How to save to OneDrive from your other apps

Word, PowerPoint and Excel

If you want to save to your OneDrive on your iPad from Word, PowerPoint or Excel.undefined




Accessibility imagesThere are many ways to make your devices more accessible. This page offers sources of guidance and useful apps that may be useful in your studies.


Device accessibility

General accessibility

Disability Services offer advice on learning support apps.

The Global Accessibility Reporting Intiative (GARI) website also has a list of useful applications.

You can filter or limit these by support for hearing / speech / vision / cognition.

The British Dyslexia Association also has a useful list of accessibility applications that may benefit a wide range of users and not just those with Dyslexia.

Apps Anywhere: Digital Learning apps

The following mind mapping apps available from Apps Anywhere may be useful when planning your work.

Please note that most apps are only available on Windows operating systems.

Inspiration 9.03

Inspiration supports users in organising their ideas graphically with diagrams, outlines and  mind maps. It helps to develop critical thinking, planning and organisational skills during learning.

Xmind 8

Xmind is a mind mapping and brainstorming software. It can be used to capture ideas, clarify thinking, manage complex information, and promote team collaboration. 

It supports mind maps, fishbone diagrams, tree diagrams, organization charts, spreadsheets, etc. Normally, it is used for knowledge management, meeting minutes and task management. Meanwhile, XMind can save to Evernote.