How to do Cornell notes on Google Docs 2023

As I have discussed the Cornell notes for computer science in detail. I have explained many questions about Cornell notes.


The problem is creating Cornell notes on google docs as a school or college student.

I have also provided some valuable PDFs of blank templates of Cornell notes in google docs.

Let’s get started!

How to rely only on documents and why you aren’t leaning to an online document system whereas many people are working on google docs and getting high speed.

Cornell Notes on Google Docs

Cornell Notes on Google Docs

Cornell notes are a quick and optimized way to collect information in the form of notes.

The Cornell method of note-taking in google docs is straightforward.

Some simple steps you have to take are given below,

  • Step #1: Open google docs
  • Step #2: See the Insert option at the top bar at #4.
  • Step #3: Hover your cursor over the table option at #2.
  • Step #4: See the popup to add a table. Select at least 2 columns and 3 rows.
  • Step #5: Merge the columns of your first row and write the title.
  • Step #6: Left column is mostly smaller than the right one.
  • Step #7: The left section is the cue section where you write terms and keywords.
  • Step #8: The right is the note-taking area to write details of keywords in the cue section.
  • Step #9: Merge the columns of the last rows and write the summary of the whole notes.

Step #1: Open Google Docs

In the beginning, you have to open google docs. You can approach google docs online. If you want to use it offline, you need to use the chrome browser and then you have to install the extension.

offline extension for google documents in chrome

Otherwise, you can access google docs online easily using any browser with a google account.

There are some ways of accessing it!

  1. Through link i.e.
  2. By searching on any search engine i.e. google, bing.
    By searching for google docs on search engine
  3. Using a Mobile app of google docs from the play store.

Step #2: See Insert Option at Top Bar (4th Item)

You need to select the insert option at the top menu. As given below in the screenshot.

See Insert Option at Top Bar at 4th number in google docs for cornell notes

You will find a list of features that will appear.

You should go to the table option like this.

go to the table option in google docs for cornell notes

Step #3: See Popup To Add Table

Select at least 2 columns and 3 rows like this,

Select at least 2 columns and 3 rows in google docs for cornell notes

Note: You can adjust them as per your requirement. And you can use more than two columns and rows as you want but we want to make it simple. Therefore, once we learn it, we can implement it as needed.

You will see a table inserted in your document.

Let’s proceed to the next step!

Step #4: Merge Cells of the First Row and Write the Title

Let’s merge these columns as given below and you will find it as a single row.

Merge Cells of the First Row as single one in google docs for cornell notes

Our main task begins from here. Write the title of your notes. You can write any word there which is the title of Cornell notes.

For example, you can write different topics about different subjects i.e. Physics, mathematics, and computer science. Whether it can be loops and OOP topics in programming or probability and discrete mathematics.

By the way, discrete math and probability have separate courses as a subject in higher classes.

Tips to write the best title for Cornell notes

  • The title should represent the whole Cornell notes.
  • The title must be as short as possible.
  • It should be meaningful.
  • The title tells the full story so keep it simple.

Step #5: Keep the Width of the Left Column Less

It is a very important step for getting started with Cornell notes.

The way to make the left column’s width shorter is so simple. What you have to do is just a single thing.

  • You will see small double arrows when you hover on the common line between two columns.
  • Keep your cursor on it.
  • Drag it by holding the right click.
  • You will see it is moving.
  • So, adjust its width as needed.

The live example of adjusting the width of the table’s rows is given below,

select column to adjust the width in Cornell notes on google docs

Step #6: Make the Left Section as Cue Section

The left column will be the Cue Section where you write terms and keywords.

cue section in Cornell notes on google docs

You can consider these terms as subtopics of the main topic or maybe any important term.

Tips to write keywords in Cue Section

  • Write all important terms in the main topic. e.g. whole numbers in the number system.
  • Keep them short and simple.
  • Write that term that requires explanation.
  • You can write sub-terms.

Step #7: Make the Right Section as Note-Taking Area

This section contains all the explanations of keywords and terms mentioned in the cue area.

You have to write there precise and justified detail of keywords. You have to check it out later, therefore, make it understandable as you wish.

This area is so simple as given below,

make left column as a note taking area in Cornell notes on google docs

Step #8: Merge Cells of the Last Rows and Write Summary

You need to merge two columns at the end and write the summary of the whole notes.

The merging of two columns is easy and simple. You can do it easily.

You have to write a summary in this section. In other words, you have to write the core idea or description briefly.

The easiest form of Cornell notes has been designed. Let’s see what we have after the steps are performed.

The ultimate product of whole steps taken is given below,

Title: Cornell Note-Taking Method
Cue Section:


e.g., the Cornell method


e.g., How to create a template in Cornell notes

Notes Area:

Explanation of Cornell method

the Whole process of creating templates


The Cornell method is an organized technique. Discuss other points of Cornell’s notes.

Blank Cornell notes template in Google Docs PDF

I am going to share with you some beautiful examples of blank Cornell note templates. Let’s see these examples like avid Cornell notes examples for high school or middle school.

This Cornell notes sheets or blank Cornell notes templates can make you able to know about Cornell notes. These templates contain three-column Cornell notes.

Download Cornell note sheets

Blank Cornell Note Template




Word Bank:


Essential Question:

Questions/ Vocab/Main Idea 





Example of Cornell Notes in Google Docs

Let’s discuss some Cornell notes made in google docs.

AP European History Name
Chapter and Section Section Title

1. Write down one or two words that are the main idea/vocabulary/etc of the text. Leave a space between each.

2. Question: As soon as you finish reading, create your own question based on the notes in the right column. Write one sign under each word. Writing questions helps clarify meaning, reveal relationships, create continuity, and strengthen memory. Also, writing questions will prepare you perfectly for studying for the next exam.

Note taking column

1. Recording: Take notes as you read

A series of telegrams that support facts, ideas, dates, etc.

3. Recite: Cover the note-taking column with a sheet of paper

Paper. Then just look at the question or cue word in the Questions and Cue column and say out loud the answer to the question, fact, or idea that the cue word represents.

4. Reflect: Think about the material by asking yourself questions. For example, “What is the significance of these facts? What principles are they based on? How can they be applied? How do they fit with what I already know?”?What lies ahead?

5. Review: Spend at least 10 minutes each week reviewing all your previous notes. This way you can keep a good amount for testing as well as current use.

Summary Use this space to write a two or three-sentence summary of what you just read.


Another Example or Template of Cornell Notes

History of the American Revolution
Key Ideas
  • The American Revolution was a political and social upheaval that took place in the late 18th century
  • It resulted in the colonies gaining independence from British rule
  • The Revolution was sparked by a variety of factors, including economic, political, and ideological grievances with the British government
  • What were the main causes of the American Revolution?
  • How did the Revolution impact the political and social structure of the colonies?
  • What were the key events and figures of the Revolution?
  • The colonies had long been unhappy with British rule and the taxes imposed on them
  • The Stamp Act of 1765 and the Tea Act of 1773 were particularly unpopular and sparked outrage
  • The Declaration of Independence, written by Thomas Jefferson, was adopted in 1776 and outlined the colonies’ grievances and justification for breaking away from Britain
  • The Revolutionary War was fought from 1775-1783 and ended with the Treaty of Paris in 1783, which recognized the colonies as independent states
Summary The American Revolution was a major turning point in American history, as it marked the birth of the United States as an independent nation. It was spurred by a variety of factors, including economic, political, and ideological grievances with the British government, and it resulted in significant changes to the political and social structure of the colonies. The key events and figures of the Revolution included the Declaration of Independence, the Revolutionary War, and the Treaty of Paris.

Let’s discuss some related questions about the Cornell method.

Why are Cornell Notes Effective?

There are dozens of methods to take notes but Cornell note taking is one of the king methods.

The reason behind this is that the information covered in notes is more organized.

The reason for organized information is columns are used side by side.

How are the Cornell notes templates helpful?

A template of Cornell notes provides the basic idea to take notes in the Cornell method.

The way of doing notes can make your life a little bit easier.


Summarizing all the points I going to list the ways to take Cornell notes on google docs.

Again I would say that the Cornell note-taking method can be easily implemented in Google Docs using the following steps:

  1. Open Google Docs and create a new document.
  2. Divide the page into three columns by going to the “Table” option in the top menu and selecting “Insert table.”
  3. Choose a 2×3 table, and adjust the width of the columns as desired.
  4. Label the left column “Cue Column,” the middle column “Notes Column,” and the right column “Summary Column.”
  5. Take notes in the middle “Notes Column” during a lecture or while reading a textbook, summarizing the main ideas and key concepts.
  6. In the “Cue Column” add keywords, questions and main ideas relevant to the notes taken.
  7. In the “Summary Column” summarize the notes taken and cue keywords to help you remember the main ideas.
  8. Review the notes regularly and summarize them further to deepen understanding.

Keep in mind that this is a basic setup and you may adjust the layout and design to fit better for you.

It’s also worth mentioning that Google Docs have a add-on called “Cornell Notes” that automates the creation of the three-column layout and gives a more polished output.

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