Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

Certificate Thesis Guide

Writing an Annotated Bibliography

For thesis work, you will most likely be required to complete an annotated bibliography.  An annotated bibliography is comprised of a select list of citations on your topic, whereby each citation is followed by a critical explanation to indicate the relevance of that resource to the larger scholarly conversation.  As noted in the Writer's Handbook from the University of Wisconsin at Madison, an annotation may do one or more of the following:

  • describe the book or article's content.
  • demonstrate the book or article's relevance to your research.
  • discuss the reliability or validity of the book or article's content.
  • present your reactions to the book or article's content.

A good annotated bibliography…

  • encourages you to think critically about the relevance of the scholarly work you intend to use and how such work fits into a field of study.  It also helps to establish the relevance and place of your intended research within this scholarly conversation.
  • establishes your own scholarly work as a contribution to this same scholarly conversation or field of study and your place as a researcher and scholar.
  • provides a path forward for other researchers and scholars to determine whether a resource may be helpful to their research, should they wish to pursue reading it. 

Additional Resources