Prospectus and Annotated Bibliography

Prospectus and Annotated Bibliography

An annotated bibliography is a list of citations of books, articles, and documents. Each citation is followed by a brief (usually about 150 words) descriptive and evaluative paragraph, the annotation. The purpose of the annotation is to inform the reader of the relevance, accuracy, and quality of the sources cited. Your annotated bibliography should include at least ten (10) academic sources. No more than four (4) of these may be web sources (web sources are those that exist solely on the Internet—like a web page with content that does not appear elsewhere in print. If you find a source that was originally printed (like an essay) but you download it from the web (through a library database, for example), then that is NOT a “web source”).
Research Focus
Crafting an effective text calls for a clear understanding of the research process. For each unit over the course of the semester, we will have a focus on various aspects of research, such as identifying sources, citing them, and incorporating quotes or paraphrases into your text, among many other things. For the annotated bibliography and prospectus, we will focus on becoming familiar with the following areas of research:
•    Identifying research needs in order to develop a research question.
•    Understanding that there are specific resources for different information needs.
•    Understand research and how different sources shape and support the components of a text.
•    Integrating excerpts (quotes, paraphrases, visual aids, etc.) into texts appropriately.
The Process
Creating an annotated bibliography calls for the application of a variety of intellectual skills: concise exposition, succinct analysis, and informed library research.
1.    Locate and record citations to books, periodicals, and documents that may contain useful information and ideas on your topic.
2.    Briefly examine and review the actual items.
3.    Choose those works that provide a variety of perspectives on your topic.
4.    Cite the book, article, or document using MLA or APA style.
5.    After the citation, write an annotation that includes information from each of the following four categories:
o    Summarize: Summaries should be at least 3 sentences. Address the main arguments. What is the point of this book or article? What topics are covered? If someone asked what this article/book is about, what would you say? The length of this summary will vary depending on the source.
o    Assess/evaluate: After summarizing a source, assess it. Is it a useful source? How does it compare with other sources in your bibliography? Ask how it fits into your research. How might it help you shape your argument? How does this work contribute to your understanding of your topic? Has it changed how you think about your topic and if so, in what way(s)?
o    Evaluate credibility: It is useful to mention why this particular author/organization is credible and applicable to the research you are doing. Is the information reliable? Is this source biased or objective? What is the goal of this source, do you suppose? Be sure to mention why you have decided to use the information from this source to add to your ethos.
o    Excerpts: List at least two excerpts from this source (quotes, paraphrased material, graphs, charts, visuals) to include in your annotation. With each excerpt, please include an accurate in-text citation/parenthetical citation.

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