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ENGL 2111 - Abbott (Online) - Spring 2018: Annotated Bib Assignment

Annotated Bib assignment

Annotated Bibliography Assignment

You are going to practice an important research skill, the annotated bibliography, by locating and evaluating 3 sources for a potential paper topic. 

Step 1

Choose a literary work from the readings in Module 5 or 6. Identify a topic related to this literary work, and then narrow it down by writing a very brief topic description (1 sentence or less) that includes the author's name and title of the work. This can be done as a phrase, question or statement.


    • The humanity/lack of humanity of Frankenstein's monster in Mary Shelley's Frankenstein
    • Why are there so many negative statements about women in Wollenstonecraft's "A Vindication of the Rights of Woman"?
    • In his poem,"Christabel," Samuel Taylor Coleridge increases sensationalism through imagery.  

Step 2

In GALILEO, locate 3 scholarly, peer-reviewed articles about the topic. Refer to the Library Assignment Guide for specific database recommendations and helpful search strategies.

Step 3

Skim the articles to determine their relevance to the topic and potential usefulness for an essay on your topic. If necessary, continue searching and replace sources you originally found to complete your list.

Step 4

After skimming and selecting your articles, carefully read each of them, taking critical notes as you read. Use the information from Step 5 to assist you in note-taking. This is a critical step! You MUST read and understand your articles before you use them in your Annotated Bibliography. (Think about the Journal Club Written Analysis. Using a similar approach to the article may be helpful.)

Step 5

Write your annotations by completing the following for each article:

A: Explain what the article is about. (1-3 sentences) 

Tell the audience what is in the article. This is the most difficult part of the annotation because it requires you to be very succinct. Don’t rewrite the article; just write the basic facts and important notes about the article here.


B: Explain how this article illuminates your topic. (1-2 sentences)

What about this article makes it relevant to your topic? Why did you select it? What pertinent bit of information makes this article stand out among the others?

C: Compare or contrast this work with another you have cited. (1-2 sentences)

How does this specific article relate to another article in your annotated bibliography? Do they agree or not? Why not? What makes it unique?

Step 6

Assemble your bibliography by placing your properly formatted citations for each article in alphabetical order, including the annotation paragraph after each citation. Revise and proofread carefully before submitted your assignment into Turnitin.


   From: Annotated Bibliography Assignment, Marc Watkins, The University of Mississippi.

Annotated Bibliography

The MLA Handbook, Eighth Edition does not include guidelines for formatting an annotated bibliography. However, your professor may assign an annotated bibliography in MLA style. The annotated bibliography contains descriptive or evaluative comments about your sources. Each citation should adhere to MLA guidelines. Begin your comments immediately following the citation. The title might be 'Annotated Bibliography' or 'Annotated List of Works Cited'.

Your instructor may request an annotated bibliography in order to evaluate the types of sources you are selecting for your research. The annotations should show that you have carefully conducted your research and critically analyzed the information you will use to write your paper. The good news is that the 'Works Cited' list will be almost complete before you begin writing. Below is an example of an annotated bibliography in MLA style.

MLA 8th Annotated Bibliography Example

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