Notetakers

  • A notetaker is a volunteer who provides copies of their notes to a student with a disability.


  • If a notetaker is needed in a course, the instructor will make an announcement asking for volunteers. You can then let them know you're interested and provide your notes for review.
  • You could also let the instructor know that if someone ends up needing notes in the course, you are willing. You should show the instructor an example of your notes.
  • You can sign up to be a notetaker on the Accommodation Request Portal before an announcement is made, as well. If a notetaker is required, you will receive an email pairing you with a student.

  • Take notes during class
  • Attend all classes - if you must miss a class, alert both the student(s) receiving your notes and the instructor
  • Take clear and concise notes
  • Make sure your notes are legible (or use a computer)
  • Be prepared for class
  • Sit near the front, or in the place you're best able to pay attention
  • Upload your notes to ARP as soon as possible - preferably within 24 hours, but no more than 48 hours after class
  • Properly label your notes:
    • Class number OR Name of class AND
    • Section number AND
    • Instructor name AND 
    • Date of notes AND
    • Number each page
  • Check your notes before uploading them - be sure they're good quality, clarify things that need clarifying, correct spelling errors, add additional information if necessary
  • Keep the name of the student(s) you are taking notes for confidential
  • Track your volunteer hours and turn in the tracking page at the end of the semester


  • Through the Accommodation Request Portal's notetaker application process. PLEASE NOTE: If you are registered with the Center for Students with Disabilities as a student receiving services (even if you are not actively using them), you will need to contact Patty Beran or Amy DiMola to have the Notetaker designation added to your profile.  You will NOT be able to use the usual notetaker registration process, as you already have a profile in the system.  Once the Notetaker designation is added, you will be able to search for and verify the courses in which you will be providing notes.
  • Here is a training document to walk you through the process.
  • Once you are registered as a notetaker, use the Accommodation Request Portal to get your notes to the student

  • Scan your notes - if you need help, ask a library staff member or a CSD student employee
  • Sign on to the Accommodation Request Portal 
  • Click on "Notetaker" in the top black ribbon
  • Click on "Upload and View Notes"
    • Choose your class from the dropdown
    • Choose the week from the dropdown
    • Choose the day(s)
    • Click "Choose File" and find the notes you want to upload
    • Click "Upload Notes"

  • Remember - this not only assists a student/students in your class, but it also helps you become a more effective note taker! 
  • Feel free to use understandable abbreviations and symbols (for example, etc., misc., i.e.).
  • Drawings are good too as long as they are clear and not too complicated.
  • Listen for big ideas and key words
    • Facts o Connections
    • Main ideas
  • Questions to Ask Yourself
    • What is the topic?
    • What do I need to know about the topic?
    • Why is this topic important?
    • What is an example of this topic?
    • How did this event or procedure come about?
  • Look for instructor's verbal cues o Repeating information
    • Pausing or slowing down 
    • Talking louder
    • Saying things like... 
      • "The main cause was..." 
      • "Something you should remember is..."
  • Look for instructor's non-verbal cues
    • Hand gestures
    • Pointing at words on the board - be sure to copy all of the information the instructor writes on the board
    • Instructor looks at students' notes to make sure they are writing things down correctly 
  • Avoid using pen colors other than black, dark blue, and red; light colors can be difficult to scan
    • Pen is better than pencil for the same reason; if writing in pencil, be sure your marks are dark
  • Avoid using highlighters, unless you are careful to scan in color every time
    • If using highlighters, stay away from light blue and any shade of red, orange, and pink; the scanner may miss the blue, and may translate the red/orange/pink as black
  • Skip lines
  • Box formulas
  • Identify videos, books referenced, etc.
  • Indicate if the information is from someone other than the professor (i.e. a student from the class)
  • Emphasize important points by
    • Underlining o Using bigger letters 
    • Using symbols such as stars
  • Leave blank spaces in your notes if you're unsure of the information