Important Components of an Annotated Bibliography

Using an annotated bibliography is a common requirement that some educational institutions set with certain types of academic assignments. As you might have never faced such a task in high school, composing this section for a research paper when in college or university can be a real challenge. The good news is that the task is not so difficult to complete when you are familiar with some basic guidelines.
The major idea behind an annotated bibliography is that a student is expected to provide each item on the source list with a brief description in the form of a personal evaluation. Such an accompanying text should be quite concise to avoid turning the list into another descriptive section. An author only should provide their reasons to show why exactly this specific website or article was chosen and what it actually is. Each annotation is to be kept within 100 to 200 words maximum. Apply an academic writing style. Remember that the items are to be provided in an alphabetical order.

What Should Be Included

Here are some details which are typically included in each source’s description when it comes to an annotated bibliography:

  • Citation details in accordance with a formatting style used (e. g. APA, MLA, Harvard etc.). Check a formatting guide to get familiar with specific requirements. Failure to meet them will definitely be considered as a severe mistake.
  • A brief presentation of the research conducted in the source. Also, you have to make clear why the report or article you make reference to is relevant to your own research. Mention the hypothesis and findings of the referred work.
  • Your experience with the quoted paper. Express your impression of the work in multiple words. The idea is that a student has to take their own attitude towards the subject under discussion. Feel free to provide your evaluation of the job done. You can also mention how easy to track and understand the author’s train of thought is. That said, include only sources that you have really read, which is actually one of the major reasons behind such a writing task as an annotated bibliography.
  • Relevance of the work’s findings. It is important to show whether the work you cite is actually has to do with your own research. Avoid putting irrelevant sources on the list; this will be considered as spam and can help your paper in no way.

Typical Mistakes You Should Avoid

Here are some common mistakes students often make trying to compose an annotated bibliography for their research paper:

  • Confusing bibliography with a descriptive section like an abstract. Remember that the list is to be just a presentation of sources used so no generalization or conclusions should be made here.
  • An annotated bibliography should not be as detailed as a literature review. Keep it concise.
  • Including sources which the student actually did not read. This won’t help. Chances are an experienced teacher will unmask you easily.
  • Failure to follow a required formatting style. This mistake can spoil your work even if the content is brilliant. So check the requirements to be met prior to getting to writing.

Doing a Good Social Media Research Paper

Today, social media are a common tool people use to communicate, collaborate, present themselves etc. Instagram, Twitter and Facebook are just a few portals to mention, which play an important role in life of the modern society. Whether you want to find new friends worldwide or learn languages, buy something or get a job, social media are here to make the task much easier.

research paperWriting a social media research paper is a common task many students face during their academic courses. What makes it rather challenging is the fact that most young people today are almost addicted to using social media, while making a good academic paper requires being objective. If not, you will be hardly able to investigate all pros and cons properly.

What to Start With

Prior to starting a good research paper, a student has to do the following:

  • Define an interesting topic to discuss and devise a catchy title. Preferably, the topic under investigation is to be a real-life issue that people face on a regular basis and recognize the necessity to handle it.
  • Search through reliable sources to find out proves of evidence, statistics and facts. This is the material that will be analyzed to make conclusions, so it should be trustworthy. Deriving this kind of information from someone’s blog page is not a good idea as such sources tend to be highly subjective, which is unacceptable when it comes to an academic work.
  • Fully understand the requirements the college sets for this kind of paper and try to adhere to them absolutely.
  • Do a little literature research to find a similar paper and read it attentively to understand where it succeeds or fails to cover the topic.
  • Come up with an idea, which will be an innovation point of your paper.

Once the preparatory work is done, and you have a clear idea of how your paper should be composed, it’s time to get down to writing the text.

A Sound Structure Is Important

Having a clear step-by-step plan will make writing a much easier process. An introduction, the main narrative body and conclusion are mandatory parts of any text, specifically an academic paper. Depending on the college’s requirements and paper standards applied, a bibliography or appendices are sometimes included too. Writing each of the parts is done in compliance with certain guidelines too. For example, a thesis statement is to be formulated within the introduction. Actually, this is a concise description of the problem the paper seeks to handle. When it comes to social media research, you should indicate that so many people are dependent on this kind of online activity.

Additionally, all parts of your work should be consistent in terms of supporting the main idea provided in your thesis statement.

In the main part of your paper, you are expected to introduce how you propose to solve the problem of social media addiction. For example, diverting users towards other, real-life activities can be a sound recipe.

Upon giving your proposals and considerations in the body of the text, summarize everything in the conclusion section.

An Analysis Essay: Some Tips to Succeed

An analysis essay is an academic assignment type that every student of a college or university faces during their study. A particular subject can be the analysis of a movie, a book, a company, an historical event etc. No matter what your topic is, there are general guidelines to consider when writing this kind of paper. Adhering to them can facilitate the process and bring success.

An Analytical Approach

As the name suggests, this kind of paper requires an author to write in an analytical, not just a descriptive way. This means a student must show an unbiased attitude and try to explain the essence of the topic. Determine and show strengths and weaknesses of the subject. Providing a comparison to something similar will be a plus. The author is free to offer their personal evaluation of what is discussed and support it with relevant facts and arguments.

If you have a good thesis statement formulated in the very beginning of your work, the following process will go much easier, while you will be able to cover the abovementioned analytical approach elements consistently. A detailed plan of the paper should be drawn up to serve the same purpose. While there are some mandatory sections like Introduction, the body and Conclusion, the plan has to provide a more detailed breakdown.

Major Paper Sections

Introduction is the opening part of an analytical essay. It has to make a reader familiar with the subject, introduce your thesis statement and present an outline of your work. Another, implied goal of the section is to urge the reader to proceed to the next page.

The main section, or just the body, is where you can provide all you have to say on the subject. Facts, reasons, quotes and comparisons are the most popular tools used at this stage. Once again, make sure you write in line with the predefined plan to keep to the narration’s general logic. Providing evidence and reasoning are crucial for this section. They determine whether your paper will look trustworthy or not. Feel free to mention and criticize alternative points of view. While offering and supporting your own attitude, try to stay unbiased as this is still an academic type of work.

Conclusion is the closing section of an analytical essay. The major requirement here is that the paragraph should summarize the logical train developed in the body section. It has to be short and relevant. Remind the reader of your thesis statement and point how it was supported by your analysis. It will be advantageous for your paper if you will be able to show real-world implications of the latter. Essays dealing with urgent topics and suggesting a way to solve a problem familiar to a broad audience are always interesting to read and appreciated by professors.

A Bottom Line

Knowing the guidelines above will help you write a good analytical essay. Additionally, it can be helpful to read some examples of similar works available on the Internet. Academic writing is a vital skill for both students and professionals, so you will never have enough of mastering it