Pro Productivity Tips for Microsoft OneNote

Many people think of OneNote as a useless piece of software. That certainly isn’t true. It’s a versatile tool that can transform the way you organise information, notes, and documents. Here are some tips to help you make the most out of Microsoft OneNote.
22.05.24 Charles Griffiths

1. Create Multiple Notebooks for Different Aspects of Your Life

OneNote allows you to create separate notebooks for various areas of your life, such as work, school, or personal projects. This helps in compartmentalising information and keeping your digital workspace organised.

2. Organise with Sections and Pages

Within each notebook, you can create sections and pages to further categorise your notes. For instance, if you have a notebook for work, you can have sections for different projects and pages for individual meetings or topics.

Pro tip: you can password protect your sections too by hovering over your section name on the left-hand side, right-click and select “Password Protection”.

3. Utilise Subpages for Detailed Organisation

For topics that require more in-depth notes, use subpages to keep related information neatly grouped together. This is particularly useful for classes or projects with multiple components.

4. Tagging for Easy Retrieval

OneNote’s tagging system allows you to mark important items, to-dos, or questions. This feature makes it easy to search and find relevant notes later.

5. Audio and Video Integration

Enhance your notes by adding audio or video recordings. This is especially useful for recording lectures or meetings that you can review later.

6. Handwriting Recognition

If you prefer writing by hand, OneNote can convert your handwritten notes to text, making them searchable and easier to share.

7. Solve Equations with Ease

OneNote is not just for text; it can also help you solve mathematical equations. Write out the equation, and OneNote will provide the solution.

8. Share and Collaborate

OneNote makes it easy to share notebooks with others, allowing for real-time collaboration on projects or study groups.

9. Use the OneNote Web Clipper

The OneNote Web Clipper is a browser extension that lets you quickly save web pages and snippets to your notebooks. It’s an excellent tool for research and reference.

10. Accessibility Features

OneNote’s accessibility checker ensures that your notes are easy to read for people with disabilities, making your content inclusive.

11. Make Meeting Notes

Capture meeting details directly from your Microsoft Calendar. Click “Insert,” then “Meeting Details,” and select the appropriate meeting. This feature streamlines note-taking during meetings.

12. Use Keyboard Shortcuts

Mastering keyboard shortcuts can significantly speed up your workflow:

  • Add a new page: Ctrl + N
  • Insert a link: Ctrl + K
  • Insert the current date and time: Alt + Shift + F
  • Select all items on a page: Ctrl + A

You can also view a wide range of common keyboard shortcuts here, or specific Microsoft Excel keyboard shortcuts here.

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