Glad you asked. The Course Notes is a multipurpose tool. It was originally designed as an e-Portfolio to help trainees and students maintain a digital journal of our learning journey.
The Course Notes has however grown in popularity and use. Some clients use it as a way of file transfer from users to Admins. The Notes can also be used as a way to submit 'homework' or assignments into instructors. Another use case is for receiving signed documents or earned external certificates. Truly, there does not appear to be a limit to what you can do with the Course Notes.
From a lowly course e-portfolio tool back in 2004 to now a many communication tool and compliment to other course level features, the Course Notes is the engine that could.
Our recommendation/ Best practice:
No matter your use case, if you are a course instructor, please add instructions in your course regarding what you want your users to do. If you want users to submit homework, indicate as much in your instructions. You can easily add new lessons to courses to be used as instructions.
If file attachments are added to Notes, you (as Admin) can see and download them from your [Reports] section.
Course Notes and attachments can be deleted from [Reports] by Admins.
Notes (in Course)
Create your own portfolio of your online e-learning or training experience. Add files, upload notes, add web links etc. Create a private journal of your e-learning journey. To get started, click the [NOTES] tab. You can then add notes and upload files as shown below.
As shown in the following illustration, you can click the upload a file with this note link to add files, and you can enter and format text within the Content Editor.
Once you are satisfied with the Note, click [SUBMIT] to add your new note.