How to Ace your Studies with Handwritten Digital Flash Cards: OneNote + NoteDex Index Cards App + a Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ Android Tablet

Welcome back to school. How are you going to make the most of your new shiny Samsung Galaxy Tablet device and study the best you can? Put down that game controller! :)

This article is focused on students that are adopting ‘digital’ technologies, and I will provide a simple three step path for successful studying. If you are reading this, you have already chosen what is perhaps the most capable and useful device for studying — the Samsung Galaxy S7+ tablet with S-Pen. It might be that you have this, or a similar tablet - or something newer! Hopefully you got the digital pen with it.

Flash cards are a great way to study, and students often buy packets of ‘Index Cards’ to make them. The idea of flash cards is to enable you to memorize new concepts, or answers to questions, through a process of active recall, with the card containing information or a concept to learn, or very often a question on the front and the answer on the back of the card. There are many ways to do this, both creating cards on paper and also on the computer, and some advanced study techniques also incorporate a principal of time-interval repetition for learning.  Medical students, Physics, Chemistry - all the sciences and languages require a lot of memorization.

In order to study successfully you will want to separate:




1) Lesson Note taking

In our digital world, you will want to take notes on your tablet or computer. There are many tools out there but perhaps the best is Microsoft OneNote or the built-in Samsung Notes. OneNote is available on Windows, Android, Mac and iPad so you can see your notes on all your devices. With OneNote you can take lots of lecture notes, both with your keyboard and your pen, containing text, ink, hyperlinks and even videos.

2) Flash Card creation

When it comes to Flash Card creation, we think one of the best applications out there is our very own NoteDex for Android and Web. You can use your pen to write your cards (the process of writing will aid in your studying). And you can of course use your keyboard. This ‘transfer’ process of reviewing your notes, and creating the cards is a valuable part of the learning process. 

With NoteDex you can organize your cards into Stacks, and even in Groups within Stacks, something you can’t really do with many other note taking programs. This will help you to organize your cards better. And the best thing? You can make as many cards as you like. Unlimited index cards that look better than the real thing! Be creative, it helps learning. But keep them SIMPLE. There is a great article on the web by Thomas Frank which I highly recommend you watch ‘8 Better Ways to Make and Study Flashcards’. One thing Thomas highlights is the power of using pictures along with the word/concept you are learning. It’s a great article — do read it! 

Bring up the OneNote on one side of the tablet, and the NoteDex Index Cards app on the other. And do use your pen — while you can create them by typing, there is a different mind-meld that occurs when you use a pen to transfer your thoughts to the (digital) paper. If you don’t have the pen, get it!!! This is why I recommend our NoteDex app - the process of creating the cards with your keyboard is ideal - and using the pen is even more mentally interactive and reinforcing (Hand to Brain wiring!).

You might also find that you like NoteDex to take lecture notes - the app enables you to take lots of text on a card. A final note on flash cards: the method is very good for learning facts and use mnemonics to really supercharge your cards - acronyms, coined sayings, interacting images. Think more creatively when using index cards to capture concepts — here diagrams or descriptions in your own words might be needed to ensure you are embedding the concept in your mind. Watch the video below by Marty Lobdell…its worth the hour, I wish I knew some of these tips when I was at school and university!

3) Studying

In order to study with flashcards you want to mix things up and not study in the same sequence all the time. In our NoteDex app you can ‘shuffle’ the cards — this will ensure that you are not seeing the same cards in the same sequence all the time. You can also hide certain cards at then of a study session - NoteDex will track which ones you need to still review - so you can study more efficiently. You can also sync your cards on all your phones as well as login on the Web app to edit and view on your desktop computer browser. Plus, if your best friend asks really nicely, you can even send your whole stack to them so they can use and edit them — by using our unique web-share feature!

Like anything, as Thomas Frank also says, flash cards are not the only method of studying. But by using OneNote or Samsung Notes, and NoteDex, along with your powerful Samsung Galaxy Tab S7+ Tablet computer with S-Pen you will have the best chance to incorporate the best techniques into your studies.

Good luck!



Microsoft OneNote


Thomas Frank

Marty Lobdell

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