Selecting references is an important part of the research process. The quality and authority of the sources
influence the quality and authority of your work. Learning to choose references involves critical reading and
the ability to assess the work in a small amount of time. As you read, you should be able to provide a quick
summary of the main points in a source in order to determine if it will contribute to your discussion of the
An annotated bibliography is a research tool to assist you in synthesizing and reviewing your sources. In many
academic fields, published annotated bibliographies speed up the research process by providing a summary
and brief evaluation of the source before another researcher reads it. Of course, you will be creating your
own set of annotations. You will find that your annotated bibliography provides an excellent start on
determining what issues are in your research field and the rhetorical claims and supports they contain.
Five to seven (5 to 7) sources need to be annotated in this assignment. You may use the sources from your
Exploratory Essay. Ten (10) sources are required in the eventual final Research Position Paper.
You will need to use five to seven academic sources from:
• MC Library databases (like CQ Researcher, Gale Opposing Viewpoints, Academic Search Complete as
well as Films on Demand)
• Websites (.edu or .gov or .org are good website source types)
• Google Scholar
• Government reports
• Newspaper articles (electronic is acceptable – ProQuest Newspapers is highly suggested)
Your annotation format is as follows:
1. Create a correct works cited entry for each source, using MLA format (See your Rules text)
2. Each annotation needs to be at least 100 words, not to exceed 150 words.
3. State who the authors are in the first sentence as you introduce the source and state what the main
overarching purpose point is of the source. This is called an “author tag.”
4. Summarize the main overarching points/claims of the author(s) in the source discussion. This is about 3
sentences or 75 words approximately.
Professor Ka’leef S. Morse, MHS, MBA
ENGL102 – Annotated Bibliography Instructions Page 2 of 2
5. Evaluate the source for its usefulness. Use two possible terms from the list in the handout “Review of
Terms to Use to Assess and Evaluate Sources” located in the Annotated Bibliography folder to discuss the
source’s academic value and credibility. This section will need to be around two sentences approximately.
6. The final sentence of the annotation needs to state to the best of your ability which part of the
Importance Order the source will be most likely used to discuss in the Position Paper and why briefly
(i.e. the Background and Context, the Counterargument to the Next Strongest Reason, etc.)
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