Depending on the assignment, an annotated bibliography might have different purposes:
- Help to formulate a thesis on a subject
- Demonstrate the research you have performed on a particular subject
- Provide examples of major sources of information available on a topic
- Provide a literature review on a particular subject
- Describe items that other researchers may find of interest on a topic
To get started:
- Choose your sources: Before writing your annotated bibliography, you must choose your sources. This involves doing research much like for any other project. Locate records to materials that may apply to your topic.
- Review the sources: Then review the actual sources and choose those that provide a wide variety of perspectives on your topic. Article abstracts are helpful in this process.
- Write the citation and annotation: When writing your annotation, the complete citation should always come first and the annotation follows. Depending on the type of annotated bibliography you are writing, you will want to include:
- The purpose of the work
- A summary of its content, including the main ideas and arguments
- For what type of audience the work is written
- Its relevance to your topic
- Any special or unique features about the material
- The strengths, weaknesses, or biases in the material
Adapted with permission:
University College Library. "How to Write an Annotated Bibliography." University of Maryland. Accessed January 31, 2014. http://www.umuc.edu/library/libhow/bibliographytutorial.cfm.