hould You Use Tape/Voice Recorder During Lessons?

Note Taking Skills: Should You Use Tape/Voice Recorder During Lessons?

The main purpose of tape recording during lectures is to create a permanent and complete record of the whole presentation. The recorded data is reviewed later that is why some students still find this device useful especially if the examinations are near.

Tape recording has several benefits. One of which is that it provides a better learning ability for auditory learners who find it hard to record everything on paper. Another is that it helps you to concentrate more on listening, and to write important details completely through the use of its play, forward, and rewind button. Moreover, accuracy in data recording is ensured through the use of this device so you will not have to worry about missing significant details from the class you have attended. And when matched with visual images, the effectiveness of memory registration in a student’s mind is increased.

Tapes are portable and interactive tools for education. Some students find it useful as an addition to the notes that they have written, especially during foreign language and history classes. And because there is no processed required for tape playbacks, it is easier for students to review the record any time they want.

Using tape during lessons may have several advantages, but it also has its negative points. Written below are some reasons why you should reconsider using tapes for examination reviews:

  1. You may find it time-consuming.
    And without taking down notes, you are actually wasting your time sitting in class and going through your lessons over and over again.
  2. It is not absolutely the best tool for reviews.
    And compared to rereading your notes, it is more likely to eat most of your time. This won’t be practical especially if you are in a hurry.
  3. It would become a problem once the recorder malfunctions.
    In case you haven’t written your lessons of paper, there would be no backup for you to use. So if you want to save yourself from effort and time loss, better if you leave your recorder at home and take clear notes instead.
  4. The recorder, tape, and batteries are far more pricey
    than a simple paper and pen. The price of batteries alone is enough to convince you that you are better off using the traditional way of taking down notes.
  5. You are more likely to miss the live clues on the discussion.
    Recording everything on tape won’t make you see the actual live clue that your teacher might be giving through non-verbal or body language (like waving hands, knocking on the board, the facial expression), on which particular part of the lecture matters the most, and important to the test.

hould You Use Tape/Voice Recorder During Lessons?


1. Write notes for each course separately. In that manner, you will find it easier to go back through the pages.

2. Invest on an erasable pencil or pen.

3. Use spiral notebooks instead of permanently-bound ones.

4. Take down notes clearly as it will save you more time.

5. Enclose urgent assignments or helpful references in a box for you to recognize them quickly.

6. Do an outline of the specific pointers to review. This makes your reviewer easier to read than writing down each line as a new point.

7. Watch out for signal words from your teacher. These are signals that indicate significant points.

Examples are:

  • There are five reasons why…
  • First… Second… Third…
  • And most importantly…
  • On the other hand…
  • Similarly…
  • On contrast…

8. If you still wish to bring a tape recorder, make sure you still take notes. Better if you use a small camera for recording your lecture. Just remember to put your lessons on your head and not just into your recorder.