Writing@CSU Activities Bank
Creating an Annotated Bibliography
Contributed by Mike Palmquist
Goals: To help students understand key concepts in an annotated bibliography
I’ve used this handout to help students understand the key concepts in an annotated bibliography. I can put it on an overhead slide or post it to the class Web page.
Typically, an annotated bibliography consists of a citation followed by an annotation. An annotation is a short summary of a source. Annotated bibliographies are especially helpful when you are doing group work, since people involved in a writing group may not have read all the sources that their group has identified as being relevant to an issue.
Your bibliography should be arranged alphabetically and you should use the MLA format (Modern Language Association). If you are unfamiliar with this format, you should consult pages 561 to 565 in the Prentice Hall Guide for College Writers.
Example entry in an annotated bibliography:
Cazden, Courtney B. “Classroom discourse.” Handbook of research on teaching (Third Edition). Ed. Merrill C. Wittrock.
Cazden reviews research in classroom discourse from a sociolinguistic perspective. She provides a fairly useful discussion of some of the key issues in the field and concludes with a discussion of the relationships between discourse and cognition.
Note the use of quotation marks in chapter titles, underlining of book titles, and the use of periods and commas between elements of the citation. For a fuller discussion of these elements, see pages 561 to 565 in the Prentice Hall Guide.