Silly Tricks & Tips on Taking Notes and Memorizing Formulas

In this week's Quantitative Reasoning lecture we covered the topic of Exponential Growth and Decay. During the review of the formula below, Dr. Graeme Bird noted that the variables spelled the word "yarn." (Note: There is a variation of this formula which spells the word "spin.")


I have previously mentioned that I am a tactile and visual learner. Whenever possible, I take notes by hand, using multi-colored pens. When the topic calls for it, I also tend to doodle, writing commentary with cartoonish facial expressions and other marginal notes around my regular lecture notes. This exercise is usually helpful in reinforcing what I've learned.

Earlier today, while helping promote an event for Dean Shinagel through various social media channels (when I was really supposed to be working on my homework assignment on the aformentioned topic), I came across some old posts that I had previouly shared with classmates in study groups.

Here's a snippet of my notes on bond pricing from the Principles of Finance class with Bruce Watson:

MGMT E-2000 Notes - Bond Pricing

It helped me to remember the order of the variables by making up the sentence: "I see peanut butter face!" (I know, I know, I get downright silly with these things. But, hey, they work!)

Here's another example that helped me remember the general graph shapes of Call and Put Options:

MGMT E-2000 Notes Hockey Stick Call Put Options

When I engage almost all of my senses during study, it helps me to better understand and later remember the theories and rules that I have learned in class.*

*I have yet to taste any of my notes. I may have to get flavored pens for that. Who knows, it may open up a deeper level of understanding and memory retention. Or, it might just send me to the ER for ingesting toxic inks. That might be a bit difficult to explain to the doctor, "I know, doc, but my math and statistics finals are coming up..."