Zettelkasten Forum

Principles to improve your Zettelkasten



  • @Will said:
    The mindset node is incomplete without a "Mental Mindset" to counterbalance the "Visual Mindset." @Edmund, your bias towards the visual is showing. I'd like to see more on the "Growth Mindset."

    In the Mindset node, you have a set of beliefs that are really traits of a mental mindset.

    The concept map is always a draft version, ready for the next improvement. Which mental mindset do you beliefe is important for a better use of Zettelkasten?

    Edmund Gröpl
    Writing is your voice. Make it easy to listen.

  • The tools I use for my Zettelkasten belong to the invisible part of the iceberg. I use Obsidian for my notes and also for the integration of visuals. Zotero is for my references. For my visuals I need Concepts, SimpleMind and PowerBI. +

    Feel free to zoom in by opening the PDF version of the concept map: https://github.com/groepl/Obsidian-Templates/blob/main/Assets/Zettelkasten Iceberg Model v7.pdf

    Edmund Gröpl
    Writing is your voice. Make it easy to listen.

  • @Edmund, you inspired me again to take up one of our favorite thinking tools, Mind Maps, and explore my thoughts about note-taking. This is in conjunction with reading Sertillanges, A. G., and Ryan, Mary. The Intellectual Life: Its Spirit, Conditions, Methods., which was referenced in the forum tread, Share with us what is happening in your ZK this week. March 13, 2024 — Zettelkasten Forum.

    Here is my first rough version of a map of the thinking tool, comprehension Monitoring. I'm looking for suggestions on where it could be expanded.

    https://github.com/woodenzen/Zettelkasting-Tools/blob/8668253c6869976d24b39cd34856458322d2bfb0/MindMaps/Comprehension Monitoring.smmx

    Will Simpson
    I must keep doing my best even though I'm a failure. My peak cognition is behind me. One day soon I will read my last book, write my last note, eat my last meal, and kiss my sweetie for the last time.

  • @Will I collected my thoughts about Comprehension Monitoring in Note-Taking, which struck me as a great improvement. Thank you for this elucidation.

    Effective note-taking as a cognitive process that involves actively monitoring your understanding of the material is a work above recording information. But how could we integrate comprehension monitoring into a note-taking mindset:

    1. Active Engagement: Approach note-taking as an opportunity to actively engage with the content. Continuously monitor your comprehension as you take notes. If something is unclear, pause to clarify or seek further explanation. And take a note about that. If you find yourself struggling to grasp a concept, make a note to revisit it later for clarification or further study.

    2. Selective Noting: Be discerning about what you note down. Focus on capturing concepts that you understand well and those that challenge you. Indifference doesn't enlighten you.

    3. Reflective Thinking: Practice reflective thinking while taking notes. Regularly pause to review what you've written and assess your level of understanding. Ask yourself questions like, "Do I feel at home with this concept?" or "Do I explain this in my own words?"

    4. Summarization: Summarize key points in your notes using your own language. This process encourages deeper understanding as you must comprehend the material well enough to condense it effectively. Aim to capture the essence of the information rather than merely transcribing it. As often described here in the forum, these summaries are key to work with your notes more effectively.

    5. Visualization and Concept Mapping: Use visual aids like diagrams, charts, or concept maps to represent relationships between ideas. @Edmund is a master in that. Visualizing information can help monitor our understanding by providing a different perspective and highlighting (and discovering) connections.

    6. Active Review: Regularly review your notes with a critical eye (or follow @Andy and his discourse mindset and simply make an addendum). Pay attention to areas where your understanding may be weak or incomplete (or where there is a constant influx of new discoveries). Use review sessions as opportunities to fill in gaps, clarify misunderstandings, or seek additional resources.

    7. Metacognitive Strategies: Employ metacognitive strategies (like the loops @Edmund instructed recently) to monitor and regulate learning processes. Be aware of your own cognitive weaknesses and strengths (I think, in that order). Adjust your note-taking approach based on what helps you comprehend and retain information best - the system has to work for you and your future self.

    8. I am getting fond of a feedback loop: Treat note-taking as part of a feedback loop between comprehension and recording. As you monitor your understanding, use it to inform how you take notes. Adjust your approach to prioritize areas where your comprehension needs improvement (that easily could fill your days).

    Many of these points I find in @Will s diagram.

    Integrating comprehension monitoring into the note-taking process, can enhance our understanding of the existing and missing material, identify areas for improvement, and develop more effective learning strategies, without taking to much time of being productive otherwise.

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