How Should I Make Notes at College Or University?

If you are to take notes effectively as students at college or university, you need to think carefully about how best you will be able to read and understand concepts relating to the subject that you are studying in shortened or even abbreviated form for the purposes of completing your coursework essay writing assignments and/or revising for exams.

Therefore, in this short article I will look to show you as to how I have abbreviated ideas in note form in relation to a particular aspect of a subject in the following example regarding the notes necessary for learning and revising contract law to be better prepared for an exam.

In so doing it is necessary to –

(a) Pick out the key concepts (e.g. in contract law – offer, acceptance, consideration, ‘the Postal Rule’, misrepresentation, etc . . .).

(b) Define the most significant ideas.

(c) Recognise links between areas of subject.

(d) Outline key aspects (e.g. in contract law, case law court decisions and sections of statutes).

(e) Use key references where they are applicable to support what you are saying.

(f) You can use complete sentences or write in a more notey fashion missing out less important words in sentences to make things a lot easier.

On this basis an example of this in practice can be given with regards to the ‘Formation of a Contract’ is as follows –

Formation of a Contract

In looking to consider whether a valid contract has been formed it is generally considered to be a good idea to look at the negotiations that have taken place between the parties. But this can be quite problematic where there there is a lengthy course of negotiations between the parties because it may be difficult to effectively determine when they have actually reached an agreement, supported by Kennedy v. Lee (1817) 3 Mer 441. Nevertheless, inspite of a prolonged period of continuing negotiations, the courts may be willing to find a concluded bargain; and, if so, a continuance of the negotiations thereafter will not necessarily terminate that agreement, illustrated by Davies v. Sweet [1962] 2 QB 300.

However, in making their decision in relation to any series of negotiations put before them, the courts will also look to consider the three fundamental aspects that are recognised as part of any contract – (a) offer; (b) consideration; and (c) acceptance – in order to make their decision about whether an agreement has been formed leading to a binding contract.

(a) Offer

The offer is considered to be concerned with the making of a written or oral proposal to give or do something as part of an agreement that may be deemed to be a legally binding contract in certain circumstances that may be express or implied from the conduct of the parties in any given case. As a consequence, it is important to understand that the person making the offer is the offeror, whilst the person to whom the offer is made is the offeree and any given offer must adhere to the following rules – (i) it must be made to a definite person, class or person, or even the world at large; (ii) it must be effectively communicated to the offeree before acceptance; but (iii) the offer is only considered to have been made when it actually reaches the offeree – see, by way of illustration, the decision in Adams v. Lindsell (1818) 1 B & Ald. 681.

(b) Consideration

The element of consideration within a contract refers to that which is actually given or accepted in return for a promise as part of an agreement in the form of a “right, interest, profit or benefit accruing to one party, or some forbearance, detriment, loss, or responsibility given, suffered or undertaken by the other”, in keeping with the decision in Currie v. Misa (1875) LR 10 Ex 153. Consideration is executed when the act that is considered to constitute the consideration in a given case is performed and is deemed to be ‘executory’ when it is yet to be performed in the future. But regardless of this, any element of consideration must be legal, not be past, and move from the promisee to the promisor, supported by Lipkin Gorman v. Karpnale [1991] 3 WLR 10.

(c) Acceptance

The idea of acceptance relates to the idea of where an offer is made by one party that is considered to be acceptable to another without qualification in words or through conduct to the offeror in conformation with the indicated or prescribe terms of the offer that has been made, in keeping with the decision in Hyde v. Wrench (1840) 3 Beav 334. But it also must be recognised that it is possible to have an acceptance ‘subject to contract’ where the parties will only be bound where a formal contract is prepared and then signed, according to Chillingworth v. Esche [1924] 1 Ch 97.