Writing a Great Annotated Bibliography Using Chicago Style
Instructors may require students to include an annotated bibliography that summarizes each source used in the research work. This is not difficult as long as you know which style you are required to format the content in. The standard Chicago format would usually require writers to list the publication details for all used sources. However, when bibliography is required, students need to do the following:
- First, write the source used in the Turbian or Chicago style where you start with the author's name and complete it with the publication year.
- Write the description of the sources. This annotation should include a summary and reasons why the source used is relevant.
Writing the Annotations Correctly
Usually, a list of sources and no further details may not be sufficient, especially if the reader of the research work is unfamiliar with the subject. Therefore, instructions often require bibliographies because they summarize and go into the details of what each source s about, thus making it easy for the reader to determine if it was relevant for the research work you are doing. Knowing which type of annotation to use is also crucial if you are to get it right.
Using the Descriptive Annotation
In this kind of annotation, one must describe the sources they used briefly, making sure that they are summarizing the key points, ideas, and arguments. These are useful since they give quick overviews and help keep records, especially those related to the subject of research.
When asked to use this kind of annotation, the instructor wants you to give a detailed and personalized view. You need to explain what you think of the sources, which could take any direction, including:
- Assessment of the authors arguments and their strength
- A description of how helpful or unhelpful the sources have been to your research work
- An evaluation of the presented evidence in the source
It is important for students to thoroughly read the instructions given to them to determine the kind of bibliography they need to write.
Formatting the Bibliography in Chicago Style
While all bibliographies' basic requirements are similar, the formats will differ, thus determining how a student or researcher organizes the content. Once you have the content that is clearly summarized, has sufficient proof, and shows relevance to your research, proceed to format the citation based on the following requirements:
- Use singe-spaces
- Start every line after the first indent
- The content/ sources should be organized alphabetically, starting with the authors last name
Remember that the bibliography should come immediately after the source. Make sure it starts on a new sentence and that it is indented. This is how it can be differentiated from the new source that follows.
Once you get the citation format right, proceed to the annotation formatting as follows:
- It should be double-spaced
- Make sure it is aligned to the left
- You should indent the first line of every paragraph
If you are having a hard time doing any of the above, consider hiring an expert to assist.