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How to Write an Annotated Bibliography: Instructions and APA Formatting

APA 6th Edition Reference Citations for Journals

You will need to follow the instructions below for writing an annotated bibliography. You will write your annotated bibliography in a WORD document and submit it through the Annotated Bibliography Assignment Submission link that is found in Canvas.

An annotated bibliography is a summary of your literature research and consists of an annotation and reference for each source that you use in your research (you will use five scholarly journal articles for this assignment). The reference is cited in the format prescribed for academic department. In this case that would be APA (6th). You will learn much more about APA formatting in later classes. However, for this class, you can refer to the example of an annotated bibliography on the last page of this document and make sure to review the following instructions for citing a journal article.

How to write the Reference citation (journal) using APA 6th edition:

APA makes use of ‘hanging indention’, meaning the second lines and beyond are indented and the first line ‘hangs’ over top of the remaining lines. One way of making sure to have a hanging indent is to highlight your complete citation after you have written it in WORD and then hit the control button (Ctrl) and the letter “t” at the same time.

Spell out the author’s last name and then use initials followed by periods only for the first name/middle name. If there is more than one author, separate the name of each author with a comma and make sure to put “&” before the last name of the last author.

Put year of publication in parentheses followed by a period.

Write title of article—capitalize only proper nouns and the first word of the title and any subtitle. Title of journal should be in italics and all main words should be capitalized.

Volume and Issue numbers reported. The volume number should be in italics. The issue number should not be italicized and is reported in parenthesis.

The purpose of the annotation is to inform the reader of the relevance, accuracy, and quality of the sources cited. An annotation is usually about 150-250 words in length and should contain information regarding:

  1. The author(s): Briefly identify their credentials as researchers
  2. The research that is being conducted
  3. Hypothesis information
  4. Findings of the study
  5. Conclusions made by the researchers
  6. Personal reaction as to the helpfulness of this study to your research goals or relating this study to other studies.

How to Format your Reference and Annotation:

APA citation of reference is listed first using a hanging indent.

Authors of the article and their credentials (1st). The research conducted by the authors (2nd). The hypothesis suggested by the researchers and how the researchers operationalized their hypothesis (3rd). The findings the researchers determined via the study (4th). Conclusions the authors make and its relevance to other studies (5th). Article’s relevance to your topic or to other similar research (6th).

The annotation and reference should be double spaced. While the reference citation is formatted into a hanging indent, the annotation is not indented and should be contained in one complete paragraph.

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