The 2018 TCEA Convention & Exposition is in full swing as educators from all over the nation have come together to learn about the latest trends in educational technology and to build on their professional development. With sessions for every role in education, the convention may take a bit of planning in what sessions to attend and what information to retain. To make the most of your convention experience, taking good notes is essential. After all, what good is taking amazing notes if you can’t find what you need in them in a few weeks or months? The best way to ensure that your convention learning (and any learning, for that matter) remains fresh and easily searched is to use one of the great note taking tools that are available to educators.
The Top Three Note-Taking Tools
Some of the best tools that may help you write the most beneficial notes are Google Keep, OneNote, and Evernote. All of these tools are currently free to use (a big plus!). They have a similar purpose, but also unique features that set each one apart.
Google Keep has standard note-taking features such as automatic saves, ability to share the finished product, and checkboxes. In addition, it has the ability to send reminders about the notes you take and has a built-in OCR. Optical Character Recognition (OCR) means that the system can not only recognize text, but also graphic images such as drawings or illustrations or sketch notes. With these added features, Google Keep is great for jotting something down quick while also giving you room to organize and build on your notes to make them more detailed. Its design is simple for content to be easy to write or find.
Note Taking with OneNote
OneNote is a little more robust than Google Keep because it provides the ability to create internal links. This can allow you to link to a particular Twitter account or chat or to a PDF handout link from a presenter. It also can hold more characters than Google Keep, making it perfect for keeping notes from multiple events and years. These features allow your notes to be a little more in-depth and organized. One disadvantage of OneNote, however, is its inability to recover deleted items, which may be an issue when you’re bouncing session to session.
Following Google Keep and OneNote is Evernote. Like OneNote, Evernote is more robust with a feature that integrates with third-party services through APIs. This lets you connect it to other applications such as Outlook or Google Drive. You can see what else works with OneNote here. However, with a more complex design, it lags in speed and consistency across all devices. The best way use Evernote is in its web version.
There are plenty of ways to take great, useful notes. To recap, Google Keep is simply designed and made for quick notes that you can put into greater depth at a later time while OneNote offers a happy medium of more detailed, organizational features. If you are using the web version, Evernote offers copious possibilities. No matter your note-taking style, one of these tools will is sure to help you take your best 2018 TCEA Convention notes.