Writers often create annotated bibliographies as a part of a research project, as a means of recording their thoughts and deciding which sources to actually use to support the purpose of their research. Some writers include annotated bibliographies at the end of a research paper as a way of offering their insights about the source’s usability to their readers.
Instructors in college often assign annotated bibliographies as a means of helping students think through their source’s quality and appropriateness to their research question or topic.
Although it may take a while to complete the annotated bibliography, the annotations themselves are relatively brief.
Annotations may include three things:
- A brief summary of the information in that source.
- A brief evaluation of the quality of the source’s information.
- A brief evaluation of whether the source is useful for the purpose of the research.
Seeing a sample annotated bibliography can be a helpful way to get started. Click on the image below to open a PDF of a sample annotated bibliography written according to APA 7th edition guidelines.