If you want to succeed in your college or university, you will need to learn how to write an annotated bibliography because it is one of the common tasks given to students. Before discussing any peculiarities of this assignment, it is worth mentioning that not all students can cope with it successfully because of the specifics of this task. Very often, students fail to find relevant and accurate sources. Also, they may fail to follow the specific formatting style. Finally, students may suffer from writer’s block or lack the inspiration to work on this assignment successfully. If this situation seems familiar to you, you should not feel ashamed to ask for professional annotated bibliography help at a legit writing service.
What Is an Annotated Bibliography?
So, what is an annotated bibliography, and why this task frightens so many students? To understand the common annotated bibliography meaning, you should know that it is a paper that provides a summary and an analysis of the sources. Typically, it is written on a certain topic and requires a certain number of academic sources to be used. Each annotation should include a brief but informative summary of the main points suggested by the author of the publication. The main goal of this assignment is to provide a brief overview of the content of the particular scholarly source.
Purpose of Annotated Bibliography
The main goal of an annotated bibliography is to enable the reader to evaluate the content of the publication and decide whether it is relevant to the topic.
What to Write in an Annotated Bibliography?
A successful annotated bibliography consists of different sources such as books, academic articles, speeches, and other relevant documents. Also, it includes a citation formatted following the required style. The annotation is typically written as follows: a citation with the bibliographic information of the publication that is followed by a summary of the sources. As you evaluate your source, you should not forget to mention its relevance, consistency, as well as its significance.
Before you start writing your paper, you will need to clarify what annotated bibliography format you are supposed to follow. As soon as you figure out what formatting style you should utilize, you will need to clarify all the latest requirements of this style to make sure you understand them well. Pay attention that proper formatting of your annotated bibliography is a very important part of the grading rubric. Thus, if you do not want to lose points, you will need to follow your citation style precisely. Most probably, you will need to follow one of the formatting styles mentioned below:
APA. An APA formatting style is a style that was developed by the American Psychological Association. It was published in 1929 offering a brand new approach towards formatting references and quotations. This style offers an author-date method. The recent edition suggests writing an APA annotated bibliography considering the following points:
Times New Roman 12 pt. font;
MLA. The Modern Language Association citation style also provides the individual with a set of rules that should be followed. This style has appeared in 1998. If you are supposed to write an MLA annotated bibliography, it means that you will need to:
Use Times New Roman or Arial 12 pt. font;
Make your text double-spaced;
Leave only one space after periods or any other punctuation marks.
Chicago. Chicago citation style is often used in Arts and Humanities. Typically, a Chicago-style annotated bibliography is a list of quotations that are followed by an abstract. Having around 150 words or a bit more, a Chicago-style annotation should provide a deeper analysis of the work. As well as any other formatting style, Chicago requires following the rules indicated below:
Page numbering starts on the first page of the actual paper (not the title page) at the right top corner;
If you want to find out how to write an annotated bibliography at a high level, you need to consider the following prompts:
Locate all the sources related to the topic.
Make sure to record their citations to avoid plagiarism;
Write a short annotation that will consist of two parts: a summary (2 sentences), an evaluation (3 sentences), a reflection (1 sentence).
When writing a summary part of an annotated bibliography introduction, you will need to focus on the following items:
A purpose and scope of the publication;
A brief description of the content and format of the source;
A summary of the central argument;
The author’s reflection;
The theoretical basis of the main argument;
A comparison with the other sources.
When you are working on the evaluation of the source, you will need to consider the following:
The intended audience of the source;
The significance of the source for the particular discipline;
The assessment of the main argument;
Possible ambiguity, subjectivity, and other shortcomings of the author’s argument;
Additional features of the author’s style.
Finally, when reflecting on your source, you will need to pay attention to the following points:
Why this source is helpful for the intended audience?
How would you characterize this source?
How does this particular source contribute to the successful understanding of the topic?
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Do not only summarize the publication but try to be maximally critical;
Be honest with your reader. Do not include the sources you have not used;
Follow the word limit.
Now, when you know what to include in an annotated bibliography, it is time to study more peculiarities of this task.
How Long Should My Annotated Bibliography Be?
The annotated bibliography length depends on the number of sources to be used, as well as the specific requirements of your teacher. Typically, each annotation includes 150-200 words, though it can be as short as just one sentence. In case of having any questions regarding the length of your annotated bibliography, it is strongly recommended to get in touch with your professor.
Should an Annotated Bibliography Be in Alphabetical Order?
Yes. In most cases, all the citations you include in your annotated bibliography should follow alphabetical order. If you fail to do it, you may confuse something, include the same source twice, or commit other mistakes that would greatly affect the quality of your paper. Therefore, in accordance with the common rules existing in academic writing, students should follow an alphabetical order when working on their annotated bibliography papers.
Annotated Bibliography vs Literature Review
If you want to succeed in annotated bibliography writing, you will need to understand the key differences between annotated bibliography vs literature review. Whereas a literature review is typically presented in a more conversational tone, an annotated bibliography is much more factual and structured. Also, in comparison with a literature review paper, an annotated bibliography includes the sources that are directly related to the topic of the work.
Another difference between these papers is the length. As it was already mentioned, each annotation should not exceed 150-200 words whereas a literature review usually includes 6,000-12,000 words. This allows claiming that an annotated bibliography is a concise assessment of the publication whereas a literature review is a comprehensive appraisal of the current knowledge, as well as the significant contributions of the researchers.
Whereas a student works on a dissertation project, they may use their annotated bibliography paper to develop a comprehensive literature review chapter.
Bibliography vs Annotated Bibliography
One more point that should be familiar to all students is the difference between a bibliography vs annotated bibliography. A bibliography is a list of references that appears at the end of the paper. Typically, it is written after the paper is ready and aims to give credit to the publications you have used when working on your paper. At the same time, an annotated bibliography can be a part of a research project or it can be a separate task assigned by a teacher to check and evaluate your ability to work with credible academic sources.
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If you want to succeed in writing an annotated bibliography, you need to be aware of the common requirements of this task. Below, you will find brief guidelines that will not only help you write a good-looking annotated bibliography paper but will also enable you to enjoy this task.
Research your topic thoroughly. To investigate your topic from different perspectives, you will need to collect publications stating different viewpoints;
Scrutinize the resources chosen to identify the most important ideas. It will help you make your paper look feasible and credible;
Write down the questions related to the topic. These questions will help you make your annotated bibliography engaging for your intended audience;
Pick up quotations that will help you reveal the essence of your sources. When including quotes in your paper, make sure to cite them according to the formatting style requested;
Sum up the main points. The main goal of all of your annotations is to summarize the main ideas expressed by the researchers;
Try to make your annotations maximally objective and unbiased. Even if you do not agree with the author’s arguments, you will need to present them in an objective way.
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Annotated Bibliography Example
Inquiry Question: What are the current issues that people in society are facing which are a threat to life?
Waite, L.J, Goldchneider and Witsberger, 1986. Nonfamily living results in traditional family orientation erosion among young adults. Review of American Sociology, 51, 541-554.
The author mostly focuses on young men and women in their sex roles. He carries out several types of research both at Brown University and at Rand Corporation. The author also uses the National longitudinal data for a survey of both young women and young men as he tries to make some tests on their hypothesis that is based on the argument that when young adults live nonfamily lives, their attitudes, the values that they have, the plans that they have set and even their expectations are drifted away from the believes that they have based on the role of sex in traditional society. READ MORE
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Bonaccio, S., Connelly, C. E., Gellatly, I. R., Kathleen, A. J., & Ginis, A. M. (2019). The participation of people with disabilities in the workplace across the employment cycle: Employer concerns and research evidence. Journal of Business and Psychology, 1-24.
The paper focuses on the question of the people with disabilities and their place in the employment cycle. Irrespective of the existing legislation on workplace diversity, disabled individuals do not get the same access to work, promotion, and opportunities as their healthy colleagues. It has been found that there many ill-founded views about the investigated group of people. It mainly relates to the concerns that they cannot properly fit in the employment cycle. Therefore, the researchers provide primary information received from evidence-based responses. Finally, they summarized and provided the evaluation of the empirical evidence based on the topic under investigation...
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