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1 The Annotated Bibliography The Center for Academic Excellence presents...

2 Many students seem mystified by the Annotated Bibliography. At the most basic level, it is a Works Cited page, but each entry is followed by a brief summary/evaluation of the reference work’s content. It is easy for those who understand annotated bibliographies to forget how mystifying they can be to newcomers. Don’t be afraid to ask your professor questions if you feel confused. The point of the Annotated Bibliography is to provide other researchers with a thumbnail sketch of your sources, in order to help them with their own research.

3 Usually, the Annotated Bibliography is written before you begin writing your research paper. Obviously, this is to ensure that you do your research well in advance; moreover, it exposes you to a variety of facts and opinions about your topic. Some professors require an introduction to the Annotated Bibliography, followed by a conclusion. This provides a simplified version of what used to be called “The Examination of the Literature.” It would be impractical to write your introduction before studying your sources.

4 Your introduction presents the topic in general terms. Be sure to include a thesis sentence. Your conclusion is essentially a discussion which compares and contrasts your sources, stating what is similar to all of them, and outlining how they differ.

5 It is important to use your sources as a springboard to your own thinking about a topic. You may notice avenues of thought which are insufficiently explored, or issues which have never been broached. You might even identify issues about which researchers remain mysteriously silent. All of these provide direction for further exploration. Mention these observations in your annotations. You may wish to evaluate the worth of each source in terms of its credibility. Be aware that some sources are more trustworthy than others. Point out your sources’ strengths and weaknesses in your annotations.

6 Annotations are not mere summaries of your sources. They include: (a) A summary of salient details. (b) An assessment of the source’s strengths and weaknesses. (c) An evaluation of the source’s usefulness for your research. (d) An assessment of the source’s credibility. (e)Observations about how the source contributes to the overall discussion. (f)An assessment not only of what the source says but also of what it chooses not to say. Naturally you need not include all of the above in your annotation, but you should keep them in mind as you write.

7 Doe 1 Annotated Bibliography Assouline, Susan G., and Megan Foley Nicpon. “The Impact of Vulnerabilities and Strengths on Academic Experiences of Twice-Exceptional Students: A Message to School Counselors.” Professional School Counseling 10.1 (2006): Print. Assouline and Foley Nicpon focus on current legislation changes in regards to special education for twice-exceptional students. The article discusses the positive impact inclusion has had on gifted children with learning disabilities (14). The authors address the myth that gifted students should excel in all areas of academic performance evenly (18). They also debunk the myth that gifted children with learning disabilities will learn strategies to compensate for their difficulties, so intervention is unnecessary (18). The article reviews multiple Reference Annotation

8 The End PowerPoint presentation by Mark A. Spalding, BA, MEd, MA (2012).

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