What is It?
What are Annotations?
- Aim for 100-200 words
- Use academic language and writing style
- Read your assignment carefully for annotation requirements
- Most assignments require a combination of summary and critique
For the summary:
- State the facts without opinions or commentary
- Include the thesis/hypothesis, main arguments, the evidence presented, and the conclusions
- Include the methods used (if a research study)
- list the author’s credentials or expertise
For the critique:
- How effective is the argument or evidence provided?
- (For research studies) Are the methods reliable and valid?
- Do you agree with the author’s conclusions?
- How does this item compare to your other sources, or trends, in the field?
- Will you use this article in your paper or project (if applicable)?
What Types of Sources Should I Use?
Your instructor will likely specify how many, how old, and what types of sources they require for your assignment.
- Usually scholarly books or journal articles
- Sometimes videos, websites, or government sources
- Credible, meaning they have a known author or creator or are from a reputable organization or government office.
- Graduate students should use only scholarly primary and secondary sources like edited book chapters, literature reviews, and research studies (no textbooks or encyclopedias).
How do I choose Sources?
Include at least one source in each category:
- Background information (the history of your topic)
- Evidence (research studies or literature reviews)
- Arguments & Conclusions (what do most scholars think? does anyone disagree?)
- Methods (best ways to study your topic)
Our Citation Resources Guide can help with citations and citation tools
Our Organization Guide has tips and tools for saving sources and searches