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Tech for Learning: Planning and Notetaking

Alternative ways to make notes and plan pieces of work.

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Audio note taking

Sonocent Audio Notetaker is software for PC and Mac which offers a visual and interactive form of note taking. Audio recordings are transformed from a single stream of information to easy to interpret coloured bars. Audio Notetaker is an ideal piece of assistive technology software to help those who struggle with note-taking.

It is available on all networked pcs and laptops.

Sonocent Audio Notetaker Guide

OneNote
Notetaking and organisation software from Microsoft. The program emulates a folder structure using notebooks, dividers and pages, which you can colour code and annotate. 
You can add pictures, photographs, organise your notes and add drawings. It is possible to add audio recordings and some versions of the software will record live into a OneNote notebook. Links with Word and is part of Office 365 which is available to all Plymouth students. The software also has a web clipper which works in most browsers.  This allows you to clip and send useful information from the web direct to a OneNote notebook. Download from Microsoft.

Apple Notes​
Apple's Notes app is already on your iPad, iPhone and Mac.  A recent update has added several drawing tools and a ruler function.Links to web pages, maps and documents can also be added to notes.  Photographs can be included as well as audio notes.  This voice recognition function is available if there is an internet connection.  The  iPhone / iPad version uses Apple's online servers to convert your speech to text. The Mac version can use offline enhanced dictation to create text to speech in a note. Syncronises across devices using iCloud, although notes can be stored locally on the computer or device if preferred.

Cogi
Cogi is a little different to the usual audio recording app.  While working, the software keeps the last few moments of audio (up to 45 seconds) in the memory of your phone. When someone says something you wish to capture, tap the highlight button and the program backs up to record and save what was just said.  This way you don't miss important information, and you can also concentrate on listening to the speaker, or make other notes. You can also add notes and pictures to recordings afterwards. The software is primarily designed for phones, but can be used on iPads. Main features of app are free, but additional features can be paid for if required. From Apple App store.

Sonocent Recorder​
Sonocent recorder is a free app.  It can make recordings of any length and colour code the results.   You can also add notes and photos too. However, the free app will only playback up to 5 minutes of audio. The reason for this is that it is designed to be used with the desktop version of Sonocent Audio Notetaker.
You can export your recordings to the desktop version of Audio Notetaker (available on all university pcs) where you can edit and add notes, pictures and slides to them. Once you open the recording in Audio Notetaker, the 5 minute playback limit is removed. An in-app purchase also removes the playback limit from the app and adds features, such as the ability to edit and create your own colour keys for highlighting within the app. Requires: Android iOS 7.0 or later. Available from Apple App store.

Voice Memos, iPhone / iPod Touch
Apple's own voice recording app is included on your iPhone or iPod touch.  It is not installed on iPads.The app can be used on its own or with an external microphone for better recordings.  The length of recording is only limited by your device storage. 

Cogi
Cogi is a little different to the usual audio recording app.  While working, the software keeps the last few moments of audio (up to 45 seconds) in the memory of your phone. When someone says something you wish to capture, tap the highlight button and the program backs up to record and save what was just said.  This way you don't miss important information, and you can also concentrate on listening to the speaker, or make other notes. You can also add notes and pictures to recordings afterwards. The software is primarily designed for phones, but can be used on Android tablets. Main features of app are free, but additional features can be paid for if required. From Google Play store

Sonocent Recorder​
Sonocent recorder is a free app.  It can make recordings of any length and colour code the results.   You can also add notes and photos too. However, the free app will only playback up to 5 minutes of audio. The reason for this is that it is designed to be used with the desktop version of Sonocent Audio Notetaker. 
You can export your recordings to the desktop version of Audio Notetaker (available on all university pcs) where you can edit and add notes, pictures and slides to them. Once you open the recording in Audio Notetaker, the 5 minute playback limit is removed. An in-app purchase also removes the playback limit from the app and adds features, such as the ability to edit and create your own colour keys for highlighting within the app. Requires: Android iOS 7.0 or later. Available from Google Play store.

Audio Recorder by Sony
Free audio recorder for Android devices.  Recording length only limited by device storage.  Well designed layout with the ability to alter the recording quality to suit the situation. Will work with the built in microphone on your device, but you can also use an external microphone. Additional functionality available on certain Sony devices. Requires Android 4.1 or later. Free from Google Play store

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Planning

Mindview is 'brain-storming' or 'mind mapping' software. It can help organise essays, arranging notes, planning presentations, etc

This software is available on all university networked PCs.  

MindView Guide

Xmind 8 
A free and open source Mind Mapping program, Xmind has a good choice of templates to get you started.If you're familiar with other mind mapping programs such as MindView, which is on Plymouth student computers, this is very similar. The free version has a good selection of features without the time limit of a trial version, so can be used for as long as you wish. The free version can also export your mind map as a graphic and your notes as text (the paid versions have extra functions). Available via XMind site.

 

iThoughts
iThoughts is a mind mapping program for iOS which can help gather thoughts and ideas together.  Useful for planning assignments. Designed for iPhone / iPad.  One of iThoughts strengths is that it can export a mind map in a variety of formats, including Mindview, Mindmanager, XMind etc. using either iCloud Drive or DropBox.  This allows you to  open your mind map in other mind mapping programs on Windows and Mac too. Requires: iOS 8.2 or later. There is a free version, iThoughts2go, with which you can create and export your mindmaps, but cannot edit them. A desktop version of iThoughts is also available from the Mac app store.

SimpleMind +
SimpleMind + is a colourful and easy to use mindmapping app. The free version enables you to create mindmaps, change colours and add notes to your map. There is a paid for version, which adds additional functionality, such as printing, add links to documents, and the ability to insert photos into your map. Requires: iOS 6 or later. There is also a desktop version for Mac, although this has a 30 day trial, rather than a free version. Free version via Apple App store.

Xmind 8
A free and open source Mind Mapping program, Xmind has a good choice of templates to get you started.If you're familiar with other mind mapping programs such as MindView, which is on Plymouth student computers, this is very similar. The free version has a good selection of features without the time limit of a trial version, so can be used for as long as you wish. The free version can also export your mind map as a graphic and your notes as text (the paid versions have extra functions). Available via Apple App store.

 

SimpleMind +
SimpleMind + is a colourful and easy to use mindmapping app. The free version enables you to create mindmaps, change colours and add notes to your map. There is a paid for version, which adds additional functionality, such as printing, add links to documents, and the ability to insert photos into your map. Requires: iOS 6 or later. There is also a desktop version for Mac, although this has a 30 day trial, rather than a free version. Free version via Google Play store.

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