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Advice for naming and tagging notes for school


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Hello all,

I'm using Evernote to organize my notes for school. I'm not sure what is a best-practice way to name and tag my notes. From what I read tagging is more manageable in the long-run than using multiple notebooks, so I'm good with keeping multiple classes in a single notebook. But it feels awkward to type in the same information in the note's title as in the tags, and unless I include lots of info in the title I end up with identical titles for multiple notes, which makes me wonder if putting the same info in tags is beneficial.

Here is some concrete info so you know what I'm working with.

Class: BIology

Entry_Type: practice test / notes / reading questions, etc.

Chapter: #

Topic: _____

So, I would have practice tests, notes, and reading quetions for each chapter. I'm not sure how to title or tag without seemingly duplicating information unneccesarily. If I title like "ch.10 - Photosynthesis" then I'll have multiple notes with the same name, since i would have notes/practice tests/reading questions. However, if I have a title like "Biology ch.10 Photosynthesis - Practice Test", i seem to be putting everything into the title, and leaving nothing unique for the tags.

Dost thou understand my plight?

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  • Level 5*

You can go quite a long ways with titling, as some of the folks here will attest. Having duplicate titles might not be such a big deal, if you title well and consistently. Some folks like to put date information into their titles as well, or you can just use the starting date, if that matters.

I'm not much of a titler -- I prefer to do my organization using tags. You've already identified several possible tags: "practice-tests", "notes", and "reading-questions". These can be reused for other courses as well, and usually applying tags is pretty easy.

So a scheme with identical titles can distinguish between those notes using tags, if you want. Or you can pull out, say, all of the notes for your course using a tag:notes search term.

The question is less about how you go about doing stuff, it's how you want to access your notes -- i.e., how to find your stuff. That should be the guide to organizing your notes.

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  • Level 5*

Hi! Welcome to the forums. I'm a titler, not a tagger, or notebooker (http://www.princeton.edu/~cmayo/evernote-organization.html). If I were you, I'd have these titles for chapter 10.

130131 bio test 10

130131 bio reading 10

130131 bio listening 10

130131 bio writing 10

doe john 2012 text

doe john 2012 pdf

test = test (practice and real -- why waste time being super specific when a search will turn up just a couple of notes and you can browse for the one you want? It's the same for other words. Photosynthesis is inside the notes anyhow, so a search for intitle:reading pho* will give you all your reading notes that have the word photosynthesis in them.)

reading = reading notes and reading questions

listening = class

writing = homework and papers

doe john 2012 = textbook author's name. I'd scan or cut that thing up, OCR it, extract the text, put that in one note, and maybe put the PDF in another note. Search for pho* when reviewing for a test and see what happens :)


Drag all these into an "index" note (see my site) and you can arrange all of your notes in various ways for easy review or archiving.

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  • 1 year later...

BOTH Tags and Note titles are important to me


here are some examples of notes titles I use


Booking - Joe Blow - Tue 7-29-14 - 10:30 am - $360.00

          (tags -  Booking, Private Party, Jul, 2014)

           Dating your notes in the title is critical some put the date first I choose to put that the note is first, in this case this note is a Booking Sheet, but I can see when and how much without even opening the note


Bill - AT&T Phone - Jul 2014 - $45.13

         (tags - Bill, Phone, Jul, 2014)

         Again first thing I can see is this note is a Bill -- ammount is imporant to0, I might not have  to even open the note - get most of the important info right in the tile


Trip - Jan - 2014 - Mexico 

         (Tags- Trip, Jan, 2014)

          I keep the files from all my trips, first word of the file name again tells me what this note is about



I love GrumpyMonkey's ideas of how to  name his files -- actually intentionall dating Year/month/Day is better than what I do in case your order gets listed by file name, I would do that too but after 5 years of Evernotes I am sticking with my convention. Also the default sorting is by most recent update so by default the most recent will be at the top, date therefore ins't the most critical identifier for me.(having said that date first is how a lot of people do it) This is how I would do it


Bio - Test 10 - 2013-01-31

       (Tags - Bio, Test, Jan, 2013)

Bio -  Reading - Chapter 4-6 - 2013-01-31

      (tags - Bio, Reading, 2013, Jan)

Bio -  Class Notes -  2013-01-31

     (tags - Class Notes, Bio, Jan , 2013)


Bio - Questions - Chaper 5 -  2013-01-31

     (tags - Bio, Reading, Questions,  Jan , 2013)


Blow, Joe - Handout- "Critical Thinking" Paper  -  2013-01-31

     (Bio, Handout, Jan, 2013)

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