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Annotated Bibliography: Handout in support of learning outcomes
An annotated bibliography is a list of citations to books, articles,and various relevant information sources. The list can bealphabetized or categorized. Following each citation is a briefdescriptive or evaluative paragraph - the annotation. Theannotation informs the reader of the relevance, accuracy, andquality of the sources cited. An annotated bibliography providesyour instructor with the results of your comprehensive libraryand database searches. An annotated bibliographydemonstrates that you have applied critical thinking skills tosearch for and evaluate information to use in your paper.TermsAnnotationAn "abstract" such as those you find at the beginning ofresearch papers and scholarly articles is descriptive; an"annotation" is descriptive, critical, and evaluative. Annotationsare descriptive and critical; they are your point of view of theresource chosen, assessed for your ability to write with clarity and appropriateness of expression, andfor your evaluation of the authority and relevance of the work.BibliographyA bibliography is a full reference list to all the sources which you used or referred to in preparing foryour paper or assignment. In some citation styles this list is termed “References” or “Works Cited”. Thevalue of a bibliography is determined by its relevant and reliable content and form: it is also the basisupon which your paper is substantiated.AbstractsFound at the beginning of scholarly journal articles, abstracts are solely descriptive summaries.Types of AnnotationsThere are several types of annotations; however, for the purpose of your assignment it is important tounderstand the differences between these three: Informative presents the original material in an abbreviated form using the same tone of that material. Descriptive: describes the works content Evaluative: describes the works content and critically evaluates the material in context of the research undertaking
Suggested Resources 1. Peer-reviewed / scholarly / refereed articles, using RDC’s licensed databases and other resources at: http://rdc.libguides.com/english. Databases of journal articles are found under the FIND ARTICLES tab on your subject guide. The most useful for English topics are JSTOR, Humanities International Complete, Project Muse, and Academic Search Complete. Be sure to read the abstract or summary of the article as this is very helpful in selecting the most appropriate and relevant articles to read for your paper. 2. Books, in the library, through WorldCat http://rdc.libguides.com/english under the FIND BOOKS & DVD tab;PurposeThe purpose of an annotation is to describe, critically, the cited material, as it pertains to your subject,arguments, research topic. The annotation provides adequate description of themes and arguments ofthe work and a critical evaluation so you and your instructor can establish if the source is credible,accurate and relevant to the topic. Annotations are brief and economical expositions often writing in sentence fragments; if related, fragments are connected with semicolons. Annotations are typically about 100 to 150 words.Creating an annotated bibliography for your paper requires you to apply a range of intellectual skills:succinct writing, critical evaluation, and comprehensive library research.Your annotation begins with an MLA citation of the work. It will have a similar format to a Works Citedpage, but with three differences: 1. it includes works (references) useful to the reader, but that might not have cited in the writing of a your paper or article; 2. the references may be organized into categories, which are arranged to guide the user rather than alphabetically;; 3. it includes a remarks (critical annotation) about the work explaining the worth of the material (or the shortfalls) within the context of the topic researched.
ProcessConduct your research with the guidance and support of your librarian using licensed online databasesand the library catalogue. Keep a record of citations to books, periodicals, and other documents thatmay be useful to your topic. Briefly critically assess each article or item then choose those that offer arange of perspectives on your topic. Take time to critically evaluate each item using specific guidelines.See: The University of Toronto Writing Center http://www.writing.utoronto.ca/advice/specific-types-of-writing/annotated-bibliography providing guidance when choosing sources, assessing the argument of the source, reading strategies, and lists of language to use when discussing arguments Simon Fraser University Library http://www.lib.sfu.ca/help/writing/annotated-bibliography formatting using MLA style Concordia University Libraries http://library.concordia.ca/help/howto/annotatedbibliog.php information to include in your annotation examples of annotations using MLA style Uris Libraries, Cornell University http://olinuris.library.cornell.edu/ref/research/skill28.htm the process for writing and critically appraising your materialBe sure you look closely at the examples provided at the above online resources. Annotationsimmediately follow the bibliographic (citation) information yet please check the MLA style manual to besure of the spacing. Remember: be brief and include precise and noteworthy information and write inan efficient and economical manner
ChecklistPreparation Define and refine the scope of your topic or subject to be researched. Examine and read or review the actual text and illustrations of each work. Do not rely on the opinion through book reviews, third-party abstracts, evaluations in other publications, etc. Choose those items that provide a range of perspectives or arguments in support of your topic or that challenge the arguments.Author Note the author. Describe is his/her accreditation, position, education, affiliation, and other noteworthy background information, etc. Evaluate the authority or background of the author.Purpose Define the purpose for writing the article or doing the research presented.Intended Determine the intended audience.Audience Is it intended for the general public, for scholars, policy makers, teachers,(of the work cited, professionals, practitioners, etc.?not of yourAnnotated Is this reflected in the authors style of writing or presentation?Bibliography)Author Bias Establish if the author has a bias What are the biases?Information Determine if the articles or books are based on personal opinion or experience,Source interviews, library research, questionnaires, laboratory experiments, standardized personality tests, etc. Evaluate reliability. Evaluate the resources cited.Author Describe the authors conclusion.Conclusion Does the author satisfactorily justify the conclusion from the research or experience? Why or why not?Significant Are there significant attachments or appendices such as charts, maps,Attachments bibliographies, photographs, documents, tests or questionnaires? If not, should there be?Relate to Subject Explain how this work illuminates the topic you have chosen to research. How is itand Other Works useful? Compare or contrast this work with another (or others) cited.Adapted from “How to Write An Annotated Bibliography”, Roger Williams UniversityLibraries. Retrieved from http://library.rwu.edu/HowdoI/annotatedbib.php