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ENG 101/ENG107: General Research Papers, Persuasive Writing & Annotated Bibliographies

This guide will direct you to the best library resources for developing a topic, researching a topic, locating argumentative sources and understanding the difference between scholarly and popular sources.

Annotated Bibliographies Explained...

An annotated bibliography is an incredibly useful research tool that organizes, summarizes and evaluates the sources you select for a research topic. There are 2 major parts of an annotated bibliography:

1. Citations - the details needed to locate a source including the author, title, publication, date, pages, etc. In other words, it is the address of the information source! This includes books, journals, magazines, newspapers, websites, media sources or anything that you will need to document as being a source on your topic.

2. Annotations - a paragraph that includes a summary, evaluation and analysis of each citation:

  • Summary - What are the main findings of the article? What information is presented?
  • Evaluation - Is the source reliable? What are the author's credentials and what is the authority of the publisher? (Try using the CRAAP Test or SIFT to evaluate your sources)
  • Analysis - Will you be able to use this information for your research? Does it support/defend what you are presenting?

Annotations can vary in length from a few sentences to a lengthy paragraph or two dependent on the sources you are evaluating and the depth of research you are doing. The number of sources you include in an annotated bibliography is dependent on your assignment requirements and/or the depth of your research. Your annotated bibliography will help you organize the best sources on a research topic and identify the strongest evidence to cite when writing a paper.

To view a sample MLA annotation, click on the link below:

Annotated Bibliography Samples - OWL @ Purdue

Please note: There are many variations in annotated bibliography content and format. Be sure to consult your instructor on your assignment specifics.


Annotated Bibliographies - Web Sources

For additional help on creating an annotated bibliography, visit the following sources:

UNC Writing Center - Annotated Bibliographies

University of Wisconsin Writing Center - Annotated Bibliography