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ENVS 161 - Water Security (Stewart-Frey)

How to Write an Annotated Bibliography

Begin with a complete bibliographic citation using the style manual of your or your instructor's choice.  The citation is followed by the annotation.


FACTS
• What kind of work is it: book? chapter? scholarly journal article? popular magazine article? webpage?

• Who is/are the author(s)? What are their qualifications?

• Who is the intended audience: scholars? general public? industry professionals? political groups? etc.

• Who is the publisher or sponsor?

• Does the work include significant appendices, statistics, data, images, web links, etc.?

• How well documented is the research/writing?

CRITICAL COMMENTS
Answering the following questions requires critical thinking on your part. Comparing your information sources helps. 

• What was the author's purpose in researching or presenting this material?

• What conclusions are drawn? Issues raised? Are the conclusions/issues adequately substantiated?

• Can you detect any biases or fallacies in the arguments or conclusions?

• Is anything lacking? Do you still have questions about the material?

• How effectively is the information presented? Well written or not? Well organized or not? Good supporting material, such as graphics?

• How does this information source compare with others you have read on the topic?

• How useful was this work to you in your research? What role did it play?

 

SAMPLE ANNOTATED BIBLIOGRAPHY ENTRIES

Ehrenreich, B. (2001). Nickel and dimed: On (not) getting by in America. Henry Holt and Company.

In this book of nonfiction based on the journalist's experiential research, Ehrenreich attempts to ascertain whether it is currently possible for an individual to live on a minimum-wage in America. Taking jobs as a waitress, a maid in cleaning service, and a Walmart sales employee, the author summarizes and reflects on her work, her relationships with fellow workers, and her financial struggles in each situation.

An experienced journalist, Ehrenreich is aware of the limitations of her experiment and the ethical implications of her experiential research tactics and reflects on these issues in the text. The author is forthcoming about her methods and supplements her experiences with scholarly research on her places of employment, the economy, and the rising cost of living in America. Ehrenreich's project is timely, descriptive, and well-researched.

Esherick, J. W. & Wasserstron, J. N. (1990, November) Acting Out Democracy: Political
Theater in Modern China." Journal of Asian Studies, 49(4), 835-865. 

This scholarly journal article provides an uncommon interpretation of the events of April-June, 1989 in  Beijing. The authors are history professors at American universities with recent firsthand experience in China. They base their article on research, personal observation and the written and pictorial records of events. Their stated goal is to create a framework in which to interpret the events that will place them within the context of Chinese political history and permit comparison with recent similar events in Eastern Europe. The conclusion drawn is that the events of April-June, 1989, in Beijing were not related to Western participatory democracy but rather to traditional Chinese forms and ideas and are characterized as political theater. As such, they are full of symbols and scripts with unique Chinese historical bases.

Hurst, M. D. (2005, February 9). When It Comes to Bullying, There Are No Boundaries; Nations Try Various Strategies to Eradicate Such Behavior in Schools. Education Week, 24(2), 8.

The author notes that bullying is a problem in every school in the world, and goes on to describe intervention programs worldwide that have helped reduce the number of incidents in many countries. Scotland and Australia, for example, have set up government-supported organizations and websites, while the Israel Ministry of Education has developed extensive teacher training. The article does not draw any conclusions about the best solutions to the problem. Intended mainly for teachers and administrators seeking a broad perspective on this issue, the article does not provide any practical advice for parents or for teachers looking for classroom intervention practices.