Each note can be sorted, tagged, annotated, edited, shared, and exported. The beauty of Evernote is it is works on multiple platforms:
- Microsoft Windows
- Windows Phone
- Apple OS X
- Apple iOS
- Chrome OS
- Web browser
I primarily use the Apple OS X and iOS application to write my notes but it is very much the same on any platform.
To maintain simplicity, I create a notebook for the certification I am studying for. In this example, I have created a notebook called 640-554 CCNA Security. You can see also see my other notebooks.
Double-clicking into the CCNA Security notebook will display all the notes contained within that notebook. I utilize two columns for sorting, Updated and Title. You can add or remove columns by right-clicking on the titles.
To create a new note, click on the + icon right below the title bar.
When I was studying for the CCNA Security exam, I used the CCNA Security Official Cert Guide. Each note in my notebook starts with the chapter number and the chapter name. My very first note, which starts with 00 contains the objectives for the exam.
I start each note with double digits for the chapters because sorting them by title will put them in order sequentially.
The objectives were obtained from Cisco’s website. Instead of copying and pasting the text from the site, I saved the objectives as a PDF and dragged and dropped the PDF into Evernote. The application saves the PDF within the note and I have the ability to open it on any of my devices. You can preview the PDF within the application and also annotate, if you wish.
When it comes to typing out my notes, I create a bolded heading for each major section of a chapter. I use italics to identify subsections.
I try to keep my notes straight to the point or summarized on specific topics, especially if it’s a section directly related to an objective for the exam.
A feature I love about Evernote is the ability to take a screenshot of a webpage or an ebook and paste it right into the note. I use this for diagrams I want to reference from within the textbook.
Here’s an example where I took a screenshot of an MST diagram for CCNP SWITCH:
Notes On The Go
Notes will sync back to Evernote’s cloud service making it useful to study while you’re on the go. I’ve used the iOS app to study while waiting in line at the DMV.
During my lunch breaks I’ll study outside while eating my lunch. I make use of my available time to learn as much as I can from my notes. If there’s something I need to add to my notes, you can do so from the mobile phone app.
If you haven’t already, give Evernote a try, and move towards digital notes. Evernote offers a freemium and paid version. The freemium version should work just fine for note taking.
Because my notes are available everywhere, I have been able to master topics at a faster rate. Essentially, being able to study anywhere has it’s benefits and it is easy to review notes.
What are you using for note taking? Are you still using pen and paper? Did you know: you can scan your paper notes into Evernote too?