Microsoft OneNote

OneNote is a feature rich notetaking application that allows you to take notes in a variety of ways including typing, writing, and speech to text. The application itself is free, and storage and syncing of notes through OneDrive is provided for free by the college through your student 365 account.

How to Access

  1. Navigate to
  2. Log in with your college email account (ending in "") if not already.
  3. You should see a list of applications at the left side of the page. Click the app titled "OneNote."

Through Microsoft 365 (formerly Office)

  1. Navigate to
  2. Log in with your college email account (ending in "") if not already.
  3. You should see a button near the top right corner of the page that reads "Install apps." Click that, then click "Microsoft 365 apps."
  4. An executable file titled "OfficeSetup.exe" will appear in your downloads. Run it to begin the install.

From the Microsoft Store

  1. Click this link to download the OneNote app from the Microsoft Store.
  2. On startup, you'll be asked to accept the license agreement.
  3. You will also be given the option to sign in with a Microsoft account. It is strongly advised to use your college provided account (ending in "") as you will have access to any class notebooks that may be provided by your course, as well as free OneDrive storage space for your notes.

Tap or scan the following QR code on your device. You will be brought to the Disability Service Assistive Technology linktree which will link to the mobile app store page for your device.


Click anywhere on the page. A text box will be created for which you can begin typing.

While typing in OneNote, you can format your text like you can with a regular Word document.

Text wraps automatically when you reach a certain length. You can expand the text box by dragging the border on the right.

Text boxes can be made anywhere on the page. This is useful for labelling diagrams and mind maps. You can also take notes more traditionally by using one large continuous text box.

If you have a tablet with a stylus pen or a drawing tablet, OneNote should be ready for notetaking by writing. Simply write on the screen with the pen.

It may help to add rule lines to your page to keep your handwriting tidy. Click here for more information on adding rule lines to your page.

  1. Select the "Home" tab at the top of the window.
  2. At the rightmost side of the ribbon menu, click the microphone icon that reads "Dictate."
  3. The Dictate dialog will appear and begin recording your voice, and transcribing it into text.

Note: You may need to make sure your notebook is syncing with OneDrive. Please see the relevant drop down on this page. If your note is not syncing, the Immersive Reader view may load indefinitely.

  1. Select the notebook and page you would like to view.
  2. Click the View tab in the top bar.
  3. Click Immersive Reader.
  4. A new window will appear with the Immersive Reader view. Here you can have it read aloud with the play button at the bottom of the view. You can also adjust the appearance at the top right of the view.

Immersive reader is available in a number of other Office/365 apps. See below a relevant video on accessing the same tool within Word.

OneNote can be accessed online through a web browser, or through an offline desktop. In both cases, if you sign in with your student account (ending in as recommended, you will already have syncing via OneDrive set up. (See access instructions above.)

If you don't have OneNote desktop set up to sync with your student OneDrive or would like to set up a new notebook to sync, do the following:

  1. Within the OneNote desktop app, click 'File' in the top bar, then click 'New' or 'Open'.
  2. If you see 'OneDrive - Trinity College Dublin' listed, you can skip this step. If not, click 'Add a Place', then click 'OneDrive'. And sign in with your student account.
  3. Within 'OneDrive - Trinity College Dublin' navigate to the folder your would like to create or open your notebook. Note that if you are opening, the notebook will appear as a folder containing a file 'Open Notebook.onetoc2'. Click this file to open the notebook.
  4. You should now have a notebook placed within your student OneDrive and can now sync this notebook between devices.

Rule lines help with keeping handwritten notes tidy. To enable rule lines in OneNote. Select the "View" tab.

Click "Rule Lines"

You have the option of regular rule lines, or grid lines as well as 4 sizes for each. Select the one that best suits your style of notetaking for this page.

If you plan on using your selected rule lines as default for all your pages, check the box titled "Always create pages with rule lines" once you have selected your preferred rule lines.

The Cornell style of Note Taking can be used with the use of OneNote's text boxes.

  1. To begin. Click the top of your page, roughly right of centre. This will create a new text box for taking notes by text.
  2. Write out your notes as usual in the right side text box.
  3. After the lecture. Revise your notes. At points where you need to write more important notes such as definitions and keywords, click the free space to the left of your lecture notes. This creates a new text box for your important notes.
  4. Also click the bottom of the page. This creates one more text box to hold a summary of your lecture.

You can learn more about the Cornell Style of Note Taking on our academic support page.

Academic Support

For further guidance, please view our academic support page.

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