Speedwriting Shorthand is a highly practical, easy-to-learn system of manual, alphabetic shorthand. In high school, I took traditional Gregg Shorthand (Diamond Jubilee Series) and I was never able to get above 70 wpm with it and made tons of errors. With Speedwriting, I was able to quickly teach myself the whole system and now write it effortlessly and very rapidly with virtually no errors.
By taking basic shorthand priniciples and incorporating them into a writing system based on English cursive handwriting, Pullis has streamlined the process considerably. There are only a small handfull of non-English strokes in this system, but they are easily incorporated and highly memorable. Notes taken in Speedwriting are easy to read too; my wife was able to read a basic sentence without knowing anything about Speedwriting because it's based on English letters you already know how to write.
If you want an edge over your classmates, get this book and learn Speedwriting. In just an hour or two a night, you'll learn and be able immediately to start using Speedwriting. From the very first lesson, there is good, very practical stuff you can use NOW (instead of six months from now like with Gregg shorthand).
I have all the Speedwriting Shorthand textbooks and this book is, by far, the best of the lot. Everything you need all under one cover. I would also recommend against buying the new copy, it's just far too expensive for what you get. Get a used copy instead and dig right in, you'll be very glad you did!