PLA 3020: Law and Society
- Getting Started
- Open Education Resources
- Research Assignment
- Group Presentations
- Formatting Your Paper
- After Graduation
An annotated bibliography has two parts:
- publisher information
- volume/issue number
- scope or purpose
- intended audience or level
- expertise and credentials of the author(s)
- objectivity of author(s)
- special features
- critical or descriptive evaluation
The following abstract is written in APA style:
Mallett, C., & Hanrahan, S. (2004). Elite athletes: why does the 'fire' burn so brightly? Psychology of Sport and Exercise, 5, 183-200.
Mallett and Hanrahan attempted to use Self Determination Theory (STD), which identifies the social and contextual conditions that create a motivational climate, to discover what motivates elite athletes to perform at such a high level. Athletes usually experience either intrinsic or extrinsic motivational factors to inspire them to demonstrate their competence at an elite level. The authors conducted qualitative interviews with 11 track and field athletes (who had received medals in the Olympics and Commonwealth Games) to gather data on motivational forces. Data from these interviews indicated that all of the elite athletes were mainly intrinsically motivated. They were highly driven by personal goals; had strong self belief; and, their sport was central to their lives. From the findings of this study, Mallett and Hanrahan concluded that when elite athletes accomplished their goals, it enhanced their perception of their competence, which positively influenced self determined motivation. Although the study supported earlier research in the area, the authors acknowledged that further studies on motivational influences are necessary to provide more substantial documentation. Written by Caroline Thompson, Librarian, UWF Libraries.
- << Previous: Group Presentations
- Next: Formatting Your Paper >>
- Last Updated: Sep 25, 2023 1:40 PM
- URL: https://libguides.uwf.edu/PLA3020
- Future Students
- Current Students
- MyOHIO Student Center
- Visit Athens Campus
- Regional Campuses
- OHIO Online
- Faculty/Staff Directory
Center for Law, Justice, and Culture
- Awards & Accomplishments
- Mission and Vision
- News and Events
- Teaching, Learning, and Assessment
- A&S Support Team
- Faculty Affairs
- Human Resources
- Promotion & Tenure
- Centers, Institutes and Special Programs
- Colloquia & Academic Events
- Faculty Labs
- Special Facilities
- Undergraduate Research
- Environmental Majors
- Pre-Law Majors
- Pre-Med, Pre-Health Majors
- Find an Internship. Get a Job.
- Honors Programs & Pathways
- Undergraduate Research Opportunities
- Undergraduate Advising & Student Affairs
- Online Degrees & Certificates
- Ph.D. Programs
- Master's Degrees
- Graduate Forms
- Thesis & Dissertation
- Alumni Awards
- Giving Opportunities
- Dean's Office
- Department Chairs & Contacts
- Faculty Directory
- Staff Directory
- Undergraduate Advising & Student Affairs Directory
Connect With Us
Guidelines on Preparing an Annotated Bibliography
An annotated bibliography is a list of citations to scholarly texts, including articles, book chapters, and books. Each citation is followed by a brief (usually about three to five sentences) paragraph that evaluates and describes the work. This brief paragraph is called the annotation. The purpose of the annotation is to inform the reader of the relevance, accuracy, and quality of the sources cited.
Annotated bibliographies are a useful way to explore a new field of research in order to identify a specific topic for a research paper. Once you have identified a general field of research, the process of preparing an annotated bibliography will enable you to explore the scholarly texts that are available in this research field, and will help you narrow your focus as you begin to write your final research paper. For this course, the annotated bibliography should include mostly texts written in the past 25 years, and all entries should be scholarly works.
For each annotation, you should present a full citation for the work, following the proper citation format: Chicago Author-Date .
You should then include a concise annotation that summarizes the central theme and scope of the book or article. Include several sentences that (a) evaluate the authority or background of the author, (b) comment on the intended audience, (c) compare or contrast this work with another you have cited, or (d) explain how this work illuminates your topic.
It can sometimes be difficult to distinguish between scholarly works and popular works.
- Scholarly works are those that: (a) are written by an individual with scholarly credentials, such as a doctoral degree in the field; (b) include evidence and documentation to support claims; and (c) include citations and a bibliography of references to other works in the field.
- Popular works are those that: (a) are written by staff reporters, journalists, or others with no academic credentials; (B) make claims that are based on opinion rather than documented evidence; and (c) do not include references, citations, or bibliographies.
- Library Home
- Criminal Justice
What is an Annotated Bibliography?
Criminal justice: what is an annotated bibliography.
- Library Resources
- Info for Distance Students
- APA Citation & Plagiarism
- CRJ 366 Databases
- CRJ 366 Websites
- CRJ 287 Resources
An annotated bibliography is a list of citations with an added summary. The citations can be to any resource relevant to your topic and assignment criteria. The summary is a brief (about 150 words) description and evaluation of the resource to inform the reader of the relevance, accuracy and quality of the sources you are citing.
- Some annotations are merely descriptive , summarizing the authors' qualifications, research methods, and arguments.
- Many annotations evaluate the quality of scholarship in a book or article. You might want to consider the logic of authors' arguments, and the quality of their evidence. Your findings can be positive, negative, or mixed.
- Your professor might also want you to explain why the source is relevant to your assignment.
CRJ 366 Annotated Bibliography:
- Find four to five scholarly sources relevant to your topic
- Read and evaluate each resource
- Create your bibliography of References
- How does this resource support your topic?
- Intended audience of resource
- Compare or contrast with your other resources
- Evaluate the author
More Help on Annotated Bibliographies:
- Purdue Owl Annotated Bibliography Help Help for writing and annotated bibliography. Includes examples and a sample annotated bibliography.
- The Writing Center @ The University of Wisconsin - Madison How to Write an Annotated Bibliography
APA Resources on the Web
- APA Formatting and Style Guide Covers all aspects of APA formatting (6th ed.), including the paper itself and references. From The Online Writing Lab (The OWL) at Purdue University.
- Citing court cases in APA style Online research guide on how to cite government documents. From the Cornell University Library.
- APA Documentation Covers all aspects of creating a paper using APA formatting (6th ed.), citations, and reference list. Also provides help with grammar and punctuation. From the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
- APA Exposed: Online Tutorial You can view the entire tutorial or go to a specific portion to answer your current need. (From Harvard University's Graduate School of Education)
- Frequently Asked Questions About APA Style Use this list of common questions about references, punctuation, grammar, and style to get official answers directly from the American Psychological Association itself. For help with specific citation examples, use one of the other sites.
Need Help? Contact a Librarian
How to Search for Scholarly Articles
Use the LIBRARY SEARCH BOX (above) to search for scholarly articles.
- Example research question: School-to-prison pipeline as it pertains to youth with mental health and/or developmental disabilities.
- Example keywords to search: school to prison pipeline mental health
- Before looking at your results, login to your library account with your WCU email address and password (top right corner).
- Under Show Only , click on Scholarly, Peer-Reviewed Journals.
- If needed, refine by date (Tip: you need to click the Refine button).
- Under Source Type , click on Articles.
- Under Subject , click on Show More . Then either click on one subject term OR check off multiple and hover at bottom of column to see green Apply Filter button (Tip: it's hidden until you hover over it).
- Still too many results? Limit by Subject again, change original search terms, or browse through results for additional/different keywords.
Search EBSCO Databases:
Tip: Search these 3 databases at once! Click on the "Choose Databases" link above the search boxes.
- Criminal Justice Abstracts with Full Text
- Academic Search Complete (EBSCO)
- National Criminal Justice Reference Service Abstracts
Sample APA Annotated Bibliography
Creating an annotated bibliography in APA style
The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association 6th edition (APA Manual) is kept behind the Research Help Desk near the 3rd floor main entrance.
This example is based on the APA style guide, but your instructor might give you other formatting instructions .
Sample Page: APA-formatted annotated bibliography
Rules! rules! rules!
The Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association (6th ed.) states the following formatting rules:
- The text and the reference list should be double-spaced.
- Numbering starts on the title page, at the top right of the page.
- Reference list entries must have a hanging indent (to do this in Microsoft Word 2003, click Format, then Paragraph, then Special, and choose Hanging).
- There should be 1 inch (2.54 cm) margins all around (top, bottom, left, and right) on each page.
- Use Times Roman font, or a similar serif font.
- Each paragraph should be indented.
- << Previous: CRJ 287 Resources
- Last Updated: Oct 10, 2023 3:09 PM
- URL: https://library.wcupa.edu/criminaljustice
- Research Guides
Criminology & Criminal Justice
- Annotated Bibliographies
- Getting Started
- News, Newspapers, and Current Events
- Books and Media
- Journals, Databases, and Collections
- Data and Statistics
- Careers and Career Resources for Criminology and Social Justice Majors
- Literature Reviews
- APA 6th Edition
What is an Annotated Bibliography?
So you’ve been assigned an annotated bibliography . . . what does that mean?
An annotated bibliography is a descriptive list of resources (books, articles, films, sound recordings, Web sites, etc.) focusing on a common theme. Each entry in an annotated bibliography has a full citation and an annotation ranging from a few sentences to several paragraphs.
The citation provides information about the author, title, date, source, and publisher of the item. Citations should be formatted according to one of the style manuals: MLA, APA, CBE, or Chicago/Turabian. See our guide on Citation Styles for more information.
The annotation is a concise and informative description that summarizes and evaluates the contents of a resource. It differs from an abstract, which just summarizes the original content. An annotation usually strikes a balance between summary and evaluation by addressing some of the following:
- Describe briefly the content of a resource
- Evaluate the usefulness of the item for the particular topic being studied
- Explain the methodology that was used
- Draw attention to any themes addressed
- Highlight strengths and/or weaknesses
- Discuss the reliability of the author or source
- Critically evaluate the content for accuracy, bias, and authority
In MLA Format (but make sure to double-space):
In APA Format (but make sure to double-space):
These samples have different strengths and weaknesses. The highlighting demonstrates which part of the annotation is summary and which part is evaluation . A librarian's evaluation of each annotation is provided.
Ehrenreich, Barbara. Nickel and Dimed: On (Not) Getting By in America. New York: Henry Holt and Company, 2011. Print.
In this book of nonfiction based on the journalist's experiential research , Ehrenreich attempts to ascertain whether it is currently possible for an individual to live on minimum wage in America. Taking jobs as a waitress, a maid in a cleaning service, and a Wal-Mart sales employee, the author summarizes and reflects on her work, her relationships with fellow workers, and her financial struggles in each situation. A n experienced journalist, Ehrenreich is aware of the limitations of her experiment and the ethical implications of her experiential research tactics and reflects on these issues in the text. The author is forthcoming about her methods and supplements her experiences with scholarly research on her places of employment, the economy, and the rising cost of living in America. Ehrenreich's project is timely, descriptive, and well-researched.
Librarian's Score: A-
This annotations include both summary and evaluation. The evaluation addresses authority and accuracy, but it could be a little stronger. For example, it could answer: What audience would benefit from reading this book? What I like about this annotation is the evaluation includes both the upside and downside to Ehrenreich's approach. It speaks to her position as the author (to wit: she's experienced, but she also backs up her work with research). The summary is also very good. I get a good sense of what this is about.
Waite, Linda J., Frances Kobrin Goldscheider, and Christina Witsberger. "Nonfamily living and the erosion of traditional family orientations among young adults." American Sociological Review 51.4 (1986): 541-554. Print.
The authors, researchers at the Rand Corporation and Brown University, use data from the National Longitudinal Surveys of Young Women and Young Men to test their hypothesis that nonfamily living by young adults alters their attitudes, values, plans, and expectations, moving them away from their belief in traditional sex roles. They find their hypothesis strongly supported in young females, while the effects were fewer in studies of young males. Increasing the time away from parents before marrying increased individualism, self-sufficiency, and changes in attitudes about families. In contrast, an earlier study by Williams cited below shows no significant gender differences in sex role attitudes as a result of nonfamily living.
Librarian's Score: C
This annotation is mostly summary. The summary is strong, but the evaluation is weak. I’m glad to learn that the authors work for reputable institutions, but more evaluation could be included.
Kotrla, Kimberly. "Domestic minor sex trafficking in the United States." Social Work 55.2 (2010): 181-187. Academic Search Premier. Web. 15 Mar 2012.
This article is about the sex trafficking of children and young adults. It is more commonly now being called "domestic minor sex trafficking." It is considered modern-day slavery. The author discusses: victims, the supply and demand of domestic minor sex tracking , how different countries tolerate it, help provided to survivors, and what this type of trafficking is. T his evidence is credible because it comes from social workers who work for the government. The goals of this source is to explain to people what domestic minor sex trafficking is, who is at risk, and what social workers can do to stop this problem. I t also brings up the human trafficking in the United States. The author, Kimberly Kotrla , is an assistant professor in the School of Social Work at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. She was a social worker for 10 years and does a lot of research about human trafficking. She gives most of her attention to the sexual exploitation of children in America. Kotrla is also on the human trafficking prevention task force committee. The audience of this article is most likely parents of young children and social workers. Published in 2010, it is fairly current. I felt that this source was an easy read, but written for a mature and educated audience.
Librarian's Score: B
This student did a great job of combining summary and evaluation. She told me what the article is about, its content as well as its purpose ("The goals of this source is..."). She addresses the author's credentials, the audience for the piece, and currency, and also the accuracy of the information ("social workers who work for the government"). However, this annotation lacks a critical analysis of how this article is relevant for the student's research question.
- Citing Sources A research guide on citation styles written by SSU librarians.
- How to Prepare an Annotated Bibliography From the Cornell University Libraries.
- How to write an annotated bibliography From the UCSC Library.
- << Previous: Careers and Career Resources for Criminology and Social Justice Majors
- Next: Literature Reviews >>
- Last Updated: Oct 25, 2023 4:57 PM
- URL: https://libguides.sonoma.edu/CCJS
Purdue Online Writing Lab Purdue OWL® College of Liberal Arts
Annotated Bibliography Samples
Welcome to the Purdue OWL
This page is brought to you by the OWL at Purdue University. When printing this page, you must include the entire legal notice.
Copyright ©1995-2018 by The Writing Lab & The OWL at Purdue and Purdue University. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, reproduced, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission. Use of this site constitutes acceptance of our terms and conditions of fair use.
This handout provides information about annotated bibliographies in MLA, APA, and CMS.
Below you will find sample annotations from annotated bibliographies, each with a different research project. Remember that the annotations you include in your own bibliography should reflect your research project and/or the guidelines of your assignment.
As mentioned elsewhere in this resource, depending on the purpose of your bibliography, some annotations may summarize, some may assess or evaluate a source, and some may reflect on the source’s possible uses for the project at hand. Some annotations may address all three of these steps. Consider the purpose of your annotated bibliography and/or your instructor’s directions when deciding how much information to include in your annotations.
Please keep in mind that all your text, including the write-up beneath the citation, must be indented so that the author's last name is the only text that is flush left.
Sample MLA Annotation
Lamott, Anne. Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life . Anchor Books, 1995.
Lamott's book offers honest advice on the nature of a writing life, complete with its insecurities and failures. Taking a humorous approach to the realities of being a writer, the chapters in Lamott's book are wry and anecdotal and offer advice on everything from plot development to jealousy, from perfectionism to struggling with one's own internal critic.
In the process, Lamott includes writing exercises designed to be both productive and fun. Lamott offers sane advice for those struggling with the anxieties of writing, but her main project seems to be offering the reader a reality check regarding writing, publishing, and struggling with one's own imperfect humanity in the process. Rather than a practical handbook to producing and/or publishing, this text is indispensable because of its honest perspective, its down-to-earth humor, and its encouraging approach.
Chapters in this text could easily be included in the curriculum for a writing class. Several of the chapters in Part 1 address the writing process and would serve to generate discussion on students' own drafting and revising processes. Some of the writing exercises would also be appropriate for generating classroom writing exercises. Students should find Lamott's style both engaging and enjoyable.
In the sample annotation above, the writer includes three paragraphs: a summary, an evaluation of the text, and a reflection on its applicability to his/her own research, respectively.
For information on formatting MLA citations, see our MLA 9th Edition (2021) Formatting and Style Guide .
Sample APA Annotation
Ehrenreich, B. (2001). Nickel and dimed: On (not) getting by in America . Henry Holt and Company.
In this book of nonfiction based on the journalist's experiential research, Ehrenreich attempts to ascertain whether it is currently possible for an individual to live on a minimum-wage in America. Taking jobs as a waitress, a maid in a cleaning service, and a Walmart sales employee, the author summarizes and reflects on her work, her relationships with fellow workers, and her financial struggles in each situation.
An experienced journalist, Ehrenreich is aware of the limitations of her experiment and the ethical implications of her experiential research tactics and reflects on these issues in the text. The author is forthcoming about her methods and supplements her experiences with scholarly research on her places of employment, the economy, and the rising cost of living in America. Ehrenreich’s project is timely, descriptive, and well-researched.
The annotation above both summarizes and assesses the book in the citation. The first paragraph provides a brief summary of the author's project in the book, covering the main points of the work. The second paragraph points out the project’s strengths and evaluates its methods and presentation. This particular annotation does not reflect on the source’s potential importance or usefulness for this person’s own research.
For information on formatting APA citations, see our APA Formatting and Style Guide .
Sample Chicago Manual of Style Annotation
Davidson, Hilda Ellis. Roles of the Northern Goddess . London: Routledge, 1998.
Davidson's book provides a thorough examination of the major roles filled by the numerous pagan goddesses of Northern Europe in everyday life, including their roles in hunting, agriculture, domestic arts like weaving, the household, and death. The author discusses relevant archaeological evidence, patterns of symbol and ritual, and previous research. The book includes a number of black and white photographs of relevant artifacts.
This annotation includes only one paragraph, a summary of the book. It provides a concise description of the project and the book's project and its major features.
For information on formatting Chicago Style citations, see our Chicago Manual of Style resources.
- Help and Support
- Referencing Guides
AGLC - Referencing Guide
- Annotated Bibliographies
- General Rules
- Acts (Statutes)
- AI Generated Content
- Book Chapters
- Cases - Reported
- Cases - Unreported
- Conference Papers
- Delegated Legislation
- Explanatory Memoranda
- Internet Documents
- Journal Articles
- Law Reform Commission Reports
- Newspaper Articles
- Parliamentary Papers
- Press & Media Releases
- Reference Materials
- Royal Commission Reports
- Second Reading Speeches
- Social Media; Podcasts; Videos
- United Nations Materials
- Web Pages; Blog Posts
- All Examples
- Sample Bibliography
- More Information ...
Guidelines for Writing Annotated Bibliographies
• This page has guidelines for writing an annotated bibliography - not citing an annotated bibliography.
• Follow the citation format guidelines for each format type if citing an annotated bibliography.
- formats follow the AGLC style guide
- order references alphabetically
- Use HEADING LEVEL ONE for the ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY centred on page
- Divide the annotated bibliography into sections Heading Level Two centred on the page:
- Sections may be omitted and other categories or subdivisions included as needed (with appropriate numbering)
- start annotation in a new paragraph below each reference
- indent annotation 2.5cm from left margin (to distinguish from the reference)
- if annotation is longer than 1 paragraph, start on a new line, but do not add extra space between paragraphs
Sample Annotated Bibliography
- << Previous: Acts (Statutes)
- Next: AI Generated Content >>
- Last Updated: Oct 25, 2023 9:53 AM
- URL: https://libguides.murdoch.edu.au/AGLC