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An "annotated" bibliography includes your source citations, just as in the standard bibliographies you are used to creating.  In addition, this type of bibliography includes an annotation of each source that provides a thesis summary and an evaluation of the source.


Start each entry with a citation in "bibliographic format" according to the "style" identified by your instructor or field of study. At MGHS, students most often use the MLA Style of citation. The Citing Sources page (always located in the Researchers Toolkit) provides more information about citing sources.


An annotation follows each citation in an annotated bibliography. Annotations are 2-3 sentence critical summaries of content and critique of literary merit or credibility and usefulness of information provided.

Cowell, L. L. H. (2007). The 21st century and the importance of libraries among high school students. Monona Sociological Review, 51, 541-554.

The author, a teacher and library media specialist at Monona Grove High School, uses data from a longitudinal survey of students and standardized scores to test the current view that libraries are crucial in the development of independent and successful learners in the 21st century. This study is in direct contrast to traditional 20th century model of school libraries and was important in proving the validity of the research showing that students who learn to use the library score higher on academic achievement tests. The credibility of the study is established by the author's expertise, demonstrated by educational training in the field of library science and professional practice.  The author also provides an extensive bibliography of works cited in preparing her argument.  This resource will be useful in establishing my thesis arguement that we need more librarians in our schools.

NOTE: Single or double space according to instructor preferences.


In the real world...

Annotated bibliographies aren't just for school work. The annotated resource list helps to establish your credibility as an author. It is also great way to identify WHY you have chosen to include a link on a web page, or to recommended further reading in a brochure:

Puckett, K. (2001). Batgirl: A Knight  Alone. New York: DC Comics.

While others attribute Batgirl's powers to the anonimity of her superhero disguise, it may just be her real-world identity (Gotham city librarian) that truly makes the difference. In this graphic novel, readers can witness the ingenuity that occurs when someone makes a habit of asking, "Where can I find that?"

The first part of your annotation should include a BREIF thesis summary of the work. Provide your reader with information about the focus and key findings of the source.

Source Evaluation

Establish the author's credibility, the currency of the information, and it's relevance to your topic, ultimately noting if the resource is useful in understanding the topic.


Check out our guide: Consider the Source: Examining Credibility, Currency, and Citation to Evaluate Information Sources.

Library Information and Media Center - Monona Grove High School - Monona, Wisconsin

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