Note Sheets (sometimes called Cheat Sheets) are often allowed in Study Events. Usually, the event will call for a certain number of double-sided, 8.5" by 11" paper (regular printer paper). In general, the strategies for making these note sheets are as follows:
- Get as much information as you can! Research your event, and try to put everything on the note sheet. If you run out of the room, take out extraneous info that you already know. With that said...
- Keep information readable, neat, and easy to access. Remember that you will be taking a timed test! If you are unable to find a piece of information, it's just as useless as not having it in the first place. Experiment with tables, font size, and formatting to fit your needs.
- Have diagrams! Often the test will have a section or two with labeling, so having diagrams on your note sheet will help you immensely.
- Use colors. Colors aid in visually organizing your information, making it easier to find and more appealing to the eyes.
- Use highlighting to sort information! This lets you find information easily and saves the space taken by indenting and multiple paragraphs.
- Eliminate articles and common words! The words "the", "and", "a", "an", and other similar words can be eliminated if you still understand what the text is saying.
- Shrink the font! Shrinking fonts by even 0.5 points give you an amazing amount of space
- Use abbreviations for the most common words on your cheat sheet. For example, say w/ instead of with, polym instead of polymerase, and rec instead of recessive! (obviously these examples are specific to heredity/designer genes, use abbreviations for words that would make sense for the event that you're doing)
- Use sheet protectors, in case of bad weather or other potential threats.
With that said, be sure to not bring more than the allowed number of note sheets. Teams have been disqualified for things like this in the years past, and it is a disappointing experience for both the student and the event supervisor.
Events that Allow Note Sheets
- One per team
- One per participant
- Two per team