Welcome to Learning Strategist Services

What does a learning strategist do?

A learning strategist can help you develop study skills, learn effective time management, prepare for exams, and more. Available for one-on-one appointments, the learning strategist can help you take a detailed look at your learning and find an individualized approach toward success.

Note Taking Strategy

Cornell* Notes

Divide the paper into 3 sections:

  • Draw a horizontal line about 5 or 6 lines from the bottom.
  • Draw a vertical line about 2 inches from the left side of the page.
  • Draw a dark horizontal line over the top line.


  • Write course name, date and topic at the top of each page.

Write Notes

  • The large box to the right is for writing notes.
  • Skip a line between ideas and topics.
  • Use abbreviations and shorthand as much as possible (not complete sentences).

Review & clarify

  • Review the notes the same day.
  • Pull out main ideas, key points, dates, and people and write them in the column on the left.


  • Write a summary of the main ideas in the bottom section.

Study your notes

  • Reread your notes in the right column.
  • Spend most of your time studying the ideas in the left column and the summary at the bottom. These are the most important ideas and will probably include most of the information you will be tested on.

*This strategy is based on the strategy presented by Pauk, W. (1997). How to study in college (6th ed). Boston: Houghton Mifflin. Learning Toolbox. Steppingstone Technology Grant. James Madison University, MSC 1903, Harrisonburg, VA 22807


Tips for Exam Preparation

  • Take time to make a plan – Use strategies such as calendar blocking and to-do lists to plan your week
  • Check your knowledge – Start your study session by writing everything you know on a piece of paper to determine the gaps in your knowledge. Use this to decide what to study first or where to spend more time.
  • Prioritize – Use the traffic light method to organize your material (Red=study first, Yellow=study second, Green=study last/review)
  • Use effective study strategies

Helpful links

    • Never broken down an assignment before? Use the assignment calculator, created by professionals at the University of Toronto
    • A rewordify tool to help you understand your readings better through
    • One of the best ways to remember things is to make it meaningful for you, try out acronymify to create acronyms related to your course material!
    • Trello has a tool to see all of your current tasks, in-progress tasks, and future tasks
    • Self-testing is a useful study strategy, check out Quizlet for learning tools and activities