How I take notes on my iPad Pro in medical school - Cambridge University medical student

  • Published on Jun 2, 2018
  • 📝My favourite iPad Screen Protector - Paperlike -
    In this video, we talk about my strategy for taking notes with the iPad and Apple Pencil. I use an iPad Pro but would probably recommend the new 2018 iPad with Apple Pencil if you're buying a new one. We talk about the benefits of taking notes with an iPad vs traditional methods, we talk about Notability vs OneNote (I prefer Notability), and I share various techniques of note-taking that I use in lectures, seminars and hospital placements. Enjoy xx
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    00:48 - iPad vs hand-writing vs typed up notes.
    03:19 - iPad Pro vs normal iPad with Apple pencil
    04:18 - Notability vs OneNote - Which one I use
    06:54 - How I take notes with Notability in lectures
    08:31 - How I take notes in seminars with handouts
    09:27 - How I take notes in clinical settings + split screen mode
    11:07 - Annotating PDFs with Notability and iPad
    11:41 - Sheet music annotation
    12:16 - How I use the iPad to take notes in day-to-day life
    13:03 - Wrap up
    Who am I:
    I'm Ali, a junior doctor working in Cambridge, UK. I make videos about medicine, technology, productivity and lifestyle design. I also have a weekly podcast with my brother (, and I write a weekly email newsletter that contains some quick thoughts + links to interesting things (
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    If you’d like to talk, I’d love to hear from you. Tweeting @AliAbdaal directly will be the quickest way to get a response, but if your question is very long, feel free to email me at I try my best to reply to things but there sadly aren't enough hours in the day to respond to everyone 😭

Comments • 4 961

  • Ali Abdaal
    Ali Abdaal  Year ago +807

    Answering some common questions:
    (1) Screen Protector? - I’ve been using and loving the Paperlike screen protector. If you want to check it out, here's an affiliate link haha -
    (2) iPad Pro size? I use the 10.5 64GB, never really considered the 12.9 because I need to carry it around in hospitals and 10.5 is a good size.
    (3) What cover/sleeve do I use? I use the (overpriced) official Apple leather sleeve and cover combination

    • e r
      e r 16 days ago

      How exactly do you print one note.. people said it always have problem

    • Steve Thea
      Steve Thea 24 days ago


    • Marta Żakiewicz
      Marta Żakiewicz 2 months ago

      could you give us the link to your iPad case? i

    • Chowow
      Chowow 3 months ago

      if you buy notability app on the ipad store, do you also have the app on your mac? because on the ipad it is 12,99 eu and on the mac it is 10,99 eu?

    • Kristin Woodcock
      Kristin Woodcock 4 months ago


  • Bharath Valiveti
    Bharath Valiveti Hour ago

    This is the video that started it all for me. The obsession to write with apple pencil on my iPad. As a student, using my iPad Air 2019 with Apple Pencil in Goodnotes 5 has literally changed the way I study and made it fun. I’m glad I saw this video and found your content. For the past 1 and half years your conten on youtube and podcast has improved my life in soooo many ways. Thank you Ali.

  • wadafefe
    wadafefe 7 hours ago +1

    can you explain why notability is not compatible with PC.

  • Shahad
    Shahad 2 days ago

    you have such a clear mind :) impressive I hope one day I become like you 😅 Usually I get easily distracted.

  • Samuel Lim Wei Siang

    I was about to speed video up to 1.5x speed but you were already doing that

  • My little art World
    My little art World 3 days ago +1

    At 2:45 I have been confused why on earth in his video there is a picture of Hanna Monatana 😱🤔

    • mohan bhalla
      mohan bhalla Day ago

      Best of both world is a reference to hanna montana.

  • Denrypaul Dalilan
    Denrypaul Dalilan 4 days ago +1

    great video sir

  • lole kemo
    lole kemo 6 days ago +1

    10:01 😮😮😍😍❤️❤️

  • Glynn Powell
    Glynn Powell 6 days ago

    Ali thanks for the great content firstlty! I found you via Notion, has Notion changed your workflow or do you still use Notability? If both, how do you combine the two. Thanks!

  • Steve Hines
    Steve Hines 6 days ago

    Great video. Very clear and concise and extermely informative.

  • Josh O'Shea
    Josh O'Shea 6 days ago

    Do you find you use your notes much on your computer or just look at them on your iPad? Cause I have a windows computer but really want to use notability

  • ashish Indian
    ashish Indian 6 days ago

    Love you bro..just awesum video

  • Carl Uy
    Carl Uy 6 days ago

    man... an iPad or a 2-in-1 laptop would be nice for college note-taking. i do have issues taking notes via typing. i cant retain as much as i want to. id be whooped if i asked for an iPad lol

  • Izz Malaysia
    Izz Malaysia 7 days ago

    Found u when looking for ipad pro reviews! Glad to see a fellow medic doing youtube vids!

  • Laura Pearson
    Laura Pearson 8 days ago

    Whoa you’re sharp!

  • uzma amjad
    uzma amjad 8 days ago

    He talks a lot 😑😅😥😓🥵

  • sippinh2o
    sippinh2o 9 days ago

    im a bit confused, did you speed up ur videos or is that ur normal speech pattern? feels way too fast

  • aamir kohli
    aamir kohli 9 days ago

    Salams, really enjoyed your video, I am a teacher and looking to purchase a pen/stylo?? I heard the Logitech crayon is good... what do you think?

  • Tanmay Arvind
    Tanmay Arvind 9 days ago +3

    Why am I watching this, I'm more likely to be whipped if I ask for an iPad Pro.

  • Michael Perrotta
    Michael Perrotta 9 days ago

    can u be my doctor please?

  • nikhil karamchandani

    Can I write notes on iPad pro while watching a video side by side

  • Ankit Chauhan
    Ankit Chauhan 9 days ago +1

    U r just awsome....😍

  • Clout Gangster
    Clout Gangster 10 days ago +1

    What a nerd 🤓

  • Aih Aih
    Aih Aih 10 days ago +1

    Do you prefer 64GB or 256GB

  • Rick N
    Rick N 10 days ago +1

    Great video bro. I did my undergrad with paper and pencil and am starting Optometry School soon. Curious as to if I should switch to iPad and Apple Pencil, new worries me

  • hobimochi
    hobimochi 10 days ago +1

    you’re gonna be a good doctor i can tell already, you have the handwriting 😂

  • Tiffany Smith
    Tiffany Smith 10 days ago

    helpful video, thanks! Concentrate, he talks fast!!!

  • Nur Maulany Din El Fath

    can you talk slower?
    cant enjoy the vid cz you talk too fast. like somethin chasing you.

  • Ashu Kaushik
    Ashu Kaushik 10 days ago +1

    I'm a doc with a good handwriting but you rock bro.

  • DrumtotheBass Woop
    DrumtotheBass Woop 11 days ago +4

    11:25 you know your a pro on the IPad, when you do spins like that. 😏

    NiCKELS 12 days ago +1

    Great video! Thanks

  • Syau 01
    Syau 01 13 days ago +1

    Slow the vid to 0.75 and he sounds normal

  • Siddhesh Manjrekar
    Siddhesh Manjrekar 13 days ago

    That 10:51 phone flip!

  • Himalaya
    Himalaya 13 days ago +1

    Help us to move notes from ios to Android specially the voice recorded lecture.

  • Gustavo Chiara
    Gustavo Chiara 14 days ago +1


  • yeeelwy
    yeeelwy 15 days ago

    that's how doctors start to make sloppy notes lol

  • Meg
    Meg 15 days ago

    Good Review, thanks.

  • Oluwasayo Babalola
    Oluwasayo Babalola 15 days ago


  • Oluwasayo Babalola
    Oluwasayo Babalola 15 days ago

    “Hypothetically speaking”

  • w0bblyd0inkb0ink
    w0bblyd0inkb0ink 15 days ago

    Which scan app do you use? Is it free?

  • eletronicdoctor3675
    eletronicdoctor3675 16 days ago

    Wow. The $500 alternative to pen and paper... you sold me sir

  • Rolijinnie Blackpink
    Rolijinnie Blackpink 16 days ago +11

    Even if you are not interested in the iPad his way of speaking is so captivating . He knows how to keep the audience awake . Can you not be a lecturer

  • e r
    e r 16 days ago +13

    Geeks are cool kids these days. His voice alone can get 1 girl a day

  • Tamim Ahsan
    Tamim Ahsan 17 days ago +1

    While i was watching i checked if i was watching it on 2x speed.😅😅

  • B D
    B D 18 days ago +6

    "what a time to be alive" I agree. I love taking notes but I typically lose notebooks, or they get ruined, destroyed over time through the elements that life throws at you. Thank you for making this. I have an iPAD pro, just purchased a pencil for it to begin my paperless journey.

  • Sofiya Clavier
    Sofiya Clavier 18 days ago +7

    I always wondered : do you have a class where they teach you how to « write like a doctor »
    😅 i don’t mean to be mean but you actually do 😅

    • pi - jey
      pi - jey 10 days ago

      @Dominique Harris wait really??? in our place they say if youre linguistic in english and have pretty nice handwriting it means you're set to be an english teacher :0

    • Dominique Harris
      Dominique Harris 14 days ago

      I wonder if that just comes naturally to doctors just like how English teachers have bad handwriting

  • LeemonTree
    LeemonTree 18 days ago

    I love how I want to study law and am buying a Surface Go over an iPad but this video still was incredibly captivating- that's how you know it's good.

  • Abass Mohamed
    Abass Mohamed 18 days ago +1

    Which iPad pro z best for study and app

  • matt
    matt 18 days ago +1

    Awesome videos. Maybe slow down when talking a little bit though. Thanks for the information

  • SuperReg14 Crux
    SuperReg14 Crux 18 days ago +1

    Im so broke.

  • Kendall Carll
    Kendall Carll 19 days ago

    What case is that?

  • Just Cat Dreaming
    Just Cat Dreaming 20 days ago +1

    Now im rethinking whether to get ipad or the surface pro 6

  • eNote File
    eNote File 21 day ago

    You should try eNoteFile! :)

  • Sriharsha Annamaneni
    Sriharsha Annamaneni 22 days ago

    Which Ipad is best for note-taking and drawing? Is apple pencil worth it or can I buy third party pencil?

  • Late Night Owl
    Late Night Owl 23 days ago

    I thought I speed up the video XD

  • Hayat Burak
    Hayat Burak 23 days ago

    I literally had to check if my video speed was on normal or not after hearing you talk !!

  • imrayhanaawis 05
    imrayhanaawis 05 24 days ago +1

    Alot of people in the commemts are saying that his handwriting screams hevs going to be a doctor, and the stereotyped handwriting if a doctor, is hard to read. Honestly I'd say his handwriting is more of a better side, and honestly, if you try reading my brother's (he wants to be a doctor) handwriting, then goodluck. I feel sorry for my bro's teachers tho.

  • brian franklin
    brian franklin 24 days ago +1

    For writing engineering labs which pad will do word processing? Great vid thanks

  • Ahmed E.A Abdalla
    Ahmed E.A Abdalla 24 days ago

    bbest of both worlds -haha

  • Stefan Z.
    Stefan Z. 25 days ago +4

    respect for playing radnichs version of pirates of the caribbean