Annotated Bibliography and Course Schedule

This week we will play catch up a bit on the reading since we were missing several people last Thursday and quite a few of you hadn’t done the reading. We will also start working on your annotated bibliographies. If you’ve never done one before this is an excellent way to keep your research all in one place. More about the annotated bibliography later…

I will also start updating the course schedule for the remainder of the semester. You will notice that there is less reading, but you will also have far more in-class group assignments, as well as individual writing assignments. I encourage you to keep up with the reading and to continuously review what we’ve already done because you will need it for your future assignments.

Back to the annotated bibliography, here’s the downloadable version: Annotated Bibliography

For those who don’t want to download it here are the requirements, you will note that this assignment is due next Sunday, March 15, 2015 by 11:59 pm in Dropbox. It will seem like you only have a short amount of time, but we will not meet in person on Tuesday, March 10th, which means you have an entire class period to go to the library and work on the assignment. Do not wait until the night before to complete this assignment.


An annotated bibliography is the next step in writing your research paper. In your annotated bibliography, you will demonstrate what research you have done since the inception of this project and what it has shown so far. It will help you organize and learn more about the material you have gathered during the research process, an important step before you can write an effective argumentative essay.


  • Analyze, evaluate, document, and draw inferences from various sources
  • Identify, select, and analyze appropriate research methods, research questions and evidence for a specific rhetorical situation
  • Integrate others’ ideas with your own
  • Use grammatical, stylistic, and mechanical formats and conventions appropriate to rhetorical situations and audience constraints


Some annotated bibliographies function as a list of sources with a brief summary of the information in the source. Others involve more information that helps when it’s time to write the paper. This assignment is a rather extended bibliography. You will use MLA format for this assignment as you write a rhetorical précis (see below) rather than a traditional annotated bibliography. Remember to explain in a separate paragraph:

  • How you will use the source in your paper.
  • How it supports or contradicts your thesis.

In addition you might also consider:

  • How this source relates to your other sources.
  • What questions the topic raises or answers
  • Including a short quote you might want to use in your paper.

First paragraph = rhetorical précis

Second paragraph = above


240-300 word introduction

Minimum of 5 sources

MLA Format

Double-spaced 12 pt Times New Roman


Your annotated bibliography will be evaluated on the following:

  • Rhetorical precis guidelines
  • Summary of ideas
  • Organization
  • Mechanics, usage, and punctuation
  • Effective use of the MLA bibliographic format

The Rhetorical Precis

A rhetorical précis is a formatted summary useful in helping the research identify important elements of a text. The summary form may be helpful for you when you write your annotated bibliography since it is intended to make you understand and question your text more completely. The rhetorical précis is helpful because it forces you to concisely articulate important elements of a text. The format acknowledges the Rhetorical Situation—that is, it forces writers to identify key material quickly, it assumes the text in question is persuasive, it facilitates articulation of the thesis statement in a work, and it recognizes the importance of the author’s purpose to help contextualize the material.

Developed by Margaret K. Woodworth, the précis includes four sentences in the following order.

The first sentence includes the name of the author, the genre, title, date in parenthesis, a rhetorically accurate verb (ex. argues, asserts, suggests, implies) and a clause containing the major assertion (thesis statement) of the work.

The second sentence is an explanation of how the author develops and/or supports the thesis, usually in chronological order.

The third sentence is a statement of the author’s apparent purpose, followed by an “in order” phrase.

The fourth sentence is a “description of the intended audience and/or the relationship the author establishes with the audience”.

Deadline: Sunday, March 15, 2014 by 11:59 pm via Dropbox


2 thoughts on “Annotated Bibliography and Course Schedule

  1. Hello, so each of the 5 annotated sources have to be compiled into one paragraph? The instructions mention the rhetorical précis is supposed to be the first paragraph? I’m a little confused. Thank you!

    1. Hi Christian,

      The short answer is that it’s two paragraphs. As for the long answer, we went over this briefly in class on Tuesday and we’ll go over it in more detail this evening.

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