Annotated bibliography


Annotated Bibliography

An annotated bibliography provides specific information about each source you have used. As a researcher, you have become an expert on your topic: you have the ability to explain the content of your sources, assess their usefulness, and share this information with others who may be less familiar with them. Think of your paper as part of a conversation with people interested in the same things you are; the annotated bibliography allows you to tell readers what to check out, what might be worth checking out in some situations, and what might not be worth spending the time on. It is kind of like providing a list of good movies for your classmates to watch and then going over the list with them, telling them why this movie is better than that one or why one student in your class might like a particular movie better than another student would. You want to give your audience enough information to understand basically what the movies are about and to make an informed decision about where to spend their money based on their interests.

What does an annotated bibliography do?

A good annotated bibliography:

· encourages you to think critically about the content of the works you are using, their place within a field of study, and their relation to your own research and ideas

· proves you have read and understand your sources

· establishes your work as a valid source and you as a competent researcher

· situates your study and topic in a continuing professional conversation

· provides a way for others to decide whether a source will be helpful to their research if they read it

· could help interested researchers determine whether they are interested in a topic by providing background information and an idea of the kind of work going on in a field


APA does not have an official format for annotated bibliographies. Methodist College has established the following format:

· format the entire document as you would an APA paper, with a title page, running head, etc.

· format the bibliographic citation for each source as you would a reference entry in APA format

· after the bibliographic citation, drop down to the next line to begin the annotation, but do not skip an extra line

· indent the annotation one tab

· MC has created a template to aid you in the formatting of your annotated bibliography

Critical & Evaluative Annotations

When creating a critical and evaluation annotation for a source, you need to:

· sum up the content of the source, as a book report might

· give an overview of the arguments and proofs/evidence addressed in the work and note the resulting conclusion

· evaluate the source or author critically (biases, lack of evidence, objective, etc.)

· show how the work may or may not be useful for a particular field of study or audience

· explain how researching this material assisted your own project