I recommend using a number scale to rate your knowledge of each herb. For instance, 1 can indicate herbs you know really well, 2 herbs you know a little about and definitely want to know more, and 3 herbs you barely know anything about. Of course, the more numbers in the scale the more intricate the rating system you can use. I don't really have a preference. Use 1 though 3 or 1 through 10 or whatever you are inclined to do for starters. We will be continuously working with these lists and the rating system can easily be changed at any point if need be. The important thing is for you to make a list of herbs that you know and want to know.
To make your list write down herbs you know about or have experience with. Include food plants if you know of medicinal application. Also include herbs you want to know about. Students of herbology have some obligation to know the main herbs of commerce, so look up the top selling herbs and visit herb stores to see what is being bought and sold. If you want to work with the public you should know something about the main herbs of commerce. You might also want to know about the herbs growing in your backyard or other nearby wild places. Include in your list plants you are curious about, even if you don't know them as medicinal uses. Maybe there are little-known uses, historical uses, potential uses, etc. We will study this things also. It is good that herbalists know about the plants around them. For examples, see some of the lists I have used.
You might make your list alphabetical by common name or alphabetical by Latin name. Eventually, we will be rearranging your lists by therapeutic categories. You might want to do such before the 18th in preparation for the class. We will also be rearranging list to address particular body systems or illnesses. For instance, a version might be used to study herbs for the lungs, or herbs for bones and joints (herbs that treat arthritis and related conditions). You might play around with these ideas too while preparing for the class. One important subject is the treatment of colds and flu. Take your main materia medica list and cull it down to those that are used for colds, flu, fevers, infections, and the like. Such a version should be organized by therapeutic category such as: "immune boosting herbs", "antibiotics", "antivirals", "warming expectorants", "cooling expectorants", "moistening expectorants", and so on. Have fun!
If you accomplish some materia medica lists before our sessions start, please e-mail them to me. If not, please come to the first session with at least a beginning materia medica draft.