An annotated bibliography is a an alphabetical or chronological list of citations with each citation followed by a paragraph that gives information about the resource. The paragraphs, or annotations, can be written in a number of styles that will be covered on the next page, Different Annotation Types.
The format of the citations and annotations is determined by the style guide you've been assigned - MLA, APA, Chicago, etc. The Libraries have both online and print style guides. In Political Science Research, you will be asked to use APSA (Reference Manual)and Chicago Author-Date, and Bluebook (for legal research).
There are numerous purposes for writing an annotated bibliography across the disciplines:
There are numerous ways to write an annotated bibliography, so pay attention to your instructor's directions! This page will show you a variety of approaches, but your instructor may have yet another personal preference for writing annotated bibliographies.
There are at least 4 types of annotations and most of the time your instructor asks you to combine some of the types. If you're doing independent research, think about the type(s) that will suit your purpose best. To see examples, visit the University of Maryland Library website.