Take notes

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OneNote provides many ways to take notes—typing, writing, drawing, sketching, speaking, copying, and so on. Typing notes couldn’t be easier—just type. On a touch-capable device, you can also handwrite notes. Want the best of both worlds? Convert handwritten notes to text.

An introduction to taking notes

Type notes

  1. Click anywhere on the page, and then start typing words of wisdom.

    Typing text

    A note container appears around text as you type, and is a way to move notes on a page.

  2. Keep typing within the note container, or click elsewhere on the page to create a new note.

  3. To begin a bulleted list, type * (asterisk) on a new line, and press Space bar.

    Type a bulleted list
  4. To begin a numbered list, type 1. on a new line, and press Space bar.

    Type a numbered list

Handwrite notes

  1. On the ribbon, choose Draw.

  2. In the Tools group, choose any of the color pens or highlighters, and then use your computer’s stylus to write notes on the screen.

    Handwriting notes

    This is also called Ink.

  3. To stop drawing, choose Type.

Convert handwriting to text

  1. Choose Draw > Type.

  2. On the page, drag a selection over the handwriting you want to convert.

  3. Choose Draw > Ink to Text.

    If the command is disabled, right-click the handwritten note, and then choose Treat Selected Ink As > Handwriting.

  4. No conversion is perfect, so double-check for accuracy and make corrections.

Tip: If you can’t convert handwriting to text, the image may be a drawing. To ensure OneNote creates handwriting when you use Ink, do the following:

  1. Choose the down arrow to expand the Pen menu.

    Using the pen menu
  2. Choose Pen mode > Create Handwriting Only.

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