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Preuss School: Process

Process of Creating an Annotated Bibliography

process: locate sources, review sources, cite sources, write annotation

Creating an annotated bibliography calls for the application of a variety of intellectual skills: concise exposition, succinct analysis, and informed library research.

  1. First, 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. Then choose those works that provide a variety of perspectives on your topic.
  3. Cite the book, article, or document using the appropriate style.
  4. Write a concise annotation that summarizes the central theme and scope of the book or article. Include one or more sentences that: 
    • evaluate the authority or background of the author,
    • comment on the intended audience,
    • compare or contrast this work with another you have cited, or
    • explain how this work illuminates your bibliography topic.

This information was adapted with permission from the following:


writing paper and pen

The organization of the annotated bibliography, if not prescribed by faculty instructions, may be one of various methods, including but not limited to:

  • Alphabetical
  • Chronological: either by date of publication or by period of subject matter (century, era, decade, event, year)
  • By subtopic
  • By format (articles, books, government documents, media, web pages, etc.)
  • By language

This information was adapted with permission from the following: