Annotated Bibliography A. Definitions: A bibliography is a list of sources (books, journals, websites, periodicals, etc.

) one has used for researching a topic. Bibliographies are sometimes called "references" or "works cited" depending on the style format you are using. A bibliography usually just includes the bibliographic information (i.e., the author, title, publisher, etc.). An annotation is a summary and/or evaluation. An annotated bibliography includes a summary and/or evaluation of each of the sources. B. What the annotation includes: Generally, annotations should be no longer than 150200 words. They should be concise and well-written. Depending on your assignment, annotations may include: ● Main focus or purpose of the work ● Intended audience for the work ● Usefulness or relevance to your research topic (or why it did not meet your expectations) ● Special features of the work (unique or helpful features) ● Background and credibility of the author ● Conclusions or observations reached by the author and conclusions or observations reached by you In general, annotations do the following: • Summarize: What are the main arguments? What is the point of this book or article? What topics are covered? • Assess: After summarizing a source, it may be helpful to evaluate it. Is it a useful source? How does it compare with other sources in your bibliography? Is the information reliable? Is this source biased or objective? What is the goal of this source? • Reflect: Once you've summarized and assessed a source, you need to ask how it fits into your research. Was this source helpful to you? How does it help you shape your argument? How can you use this source in your research project? Has it changed how you think about your topic? B. Purpose: 1. To learn about your topic: Writing an annotated bibliography is excellent preparation for a research project. Just collecting sources for a bibliography is useful, but when you have to write annotations for each source, you're forced to read each source more carefully. You begin to read more critically instead of just collecting information. 2. To help you formulate a thesis: Every good research paper is an argument. The purpose of research is to state and support a thesis. So a very important part of research is developing a thesis that is debatable, interesting, and current. Writing an annotated bibliography can help you gain a good perspective on what is being said about your topic. By reading and responding to a variety of sources on a topic, you'll start to see what the issues are, what people are arguing about, and you'll then be able to develop your own point of view. ( general/gl_annotatedbib.html)

Evaluate the relevance of the information. Explain the main purpose of the work. date. etc. Do not number them. List the completed bibliographical citation. 2. . except for key words or phrases that are enclosed in quotation marks and accurately cited? • Does the summary appropriately acknowledge the original source? E. weakness. author. x (for example). and do not leave unnecessary space between them. the bibliographic information of the source (the title. 4. keep in mind the following questions: • Does the summary accurately reflect the source’s key facts or ideas? • Is the summary shorter than the original but detailed enough to stand on its own? • Does the summary help your reader understand the context of the information or the statements you include from the source? • Is the summary written entirely in your own words. The citations.C. 3. Warn readers of any defect. Remember that the annotations should be arranged in alphabetical order (according to the author’s last name or the first word of the citation). Process for Writing an Annotated Bibliography (leo. with no extra space between citation and first paragraph in each annotation. or bias. Format: The bibliographic information: For this annotated 5. 6.) should be written in MLA format.html): 1. Indicate the possible audience for the work. Briefly describe the content. D. use par. When you write a summary. Annotations: The annotations for each source should be written in paragraph form. as well as the paragraphs should be double-spaced. the paragraph number where your quote comes from. Note any special features. publisher. For websites that have no page numbers. Following MLA conventions. use parenthetical documentation (check MLA documentation style). 7. that is. if you quote anything in your annotations.stcloudstate.

His examples have been selected to contradict such truisms as: "seeing is believing". researchers at the Rand Corporation and Brown He doesn't refer to any previous works on the topic. (Sample from: "Nonfamily Living and the Erosion of Traditional Family Orientations Among Young Adults. moving them away from their belief in traditional sex roles.Sample Annotations London.html) Waite. use data from the National Longitudinal Surveys of Young Women and Young Men to test their hypothesis that nonfamily living by young adults alters their attitudes.stcloudstate. Increasing the time away from parents before marrying increased individualism. (Sample from: http://leo. an earlier study by Williams cited below shows no significant gender differences in sex role attitudes as a result of nonfamily living. to illustrate his points. and "satisfaction is its own reward. London's style and vocabulary would make the article of interest to any reader. Linda J. and Christina Witsberger." London uses logical arguments to support his ideas which are his personal opinion. The authors. values. Herbert London." American Sociological Review 51 (1986): 541-554. explains how television contradicts five commonly believed ideas. plans. and changes in attitudes about families. self-sufficiency. He uses specific examples of events seen on television. They find their hypothesis strongly supported in young females. the Dean of Journalism at New York University and author of several books and articles." Television Quarterly 10. In contrast. while the effects were fewer in studies of young males. "a picture is worth a thousand words". and expectations.library. Herbert.1 (19820: 81-89. "Five Myths of the Television Age..cornell.htm) . Frances Kobrin Goldscheider. such as the assassination of John Kennedy.

edu/handouts/general/gl_annotatedbib. New York: Anchor. the chapters in Lamott's book are wry and anecdotal and offer advice on everything from plot development to jealousy. and struggling with one's own imperfect humanity in the process. Lamott includes writing exercises designed to be both productive and fun. (Sample from: http://www.purdue. 1995. Students should find Lamott's style both engaging and enjoyable. Chapters in this text could easily be included in the curriculum for a writing class. this text is indispensable because of its honest perspective. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life. Rather than a practical handbook to producing and/or publishing.english. Lamott offers sane advice for those struggling with the anxieties of writing.Lamott. and its encouraging approach. Several of the chapters in Part 1 address the writing process and would serve to generate discussion on students' own drafting and revising processes. from perfectionism to struggling with one's own internal critic. Taking a humorous approach to the realities of being a writer.html) .owl. In the process. Some of the writing exercises would also be appropriate for generating classroom writing exercises. publishing. but her main project seems to be offering the reader a reality check regarding writing. Anne. its down-to-earth humor. Lamott's book offers honest advice on the nature of a writing life. complete with its insecurities and failures.

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