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Custom annotated bibliography: set a writing plan to follow

The annotation of research papers and theses is termed as one of the significant steps to make a research appealing at the first glance. The custom annotated bibliography is mostly written to map the related finding or source at ease. Hence, it becomes important to understand the aspects of the writings, journals and magazines. Writing a custom annotated bibliography requires extensive knowledge and understanding of the subject. Further, knowledge of writing formats like APA, MLA, and Harvard etc. The expertise in professional writing adds advantage in making genuine annotated bibliography. Here, in this article, we will discuss the plan required to be followed while developing quality content. Read further:

Know the difference

It is the first step to know the basic difference between Annotations and Abstracts. People feel ambiguity in differentiating between both. The understanding of the difference will centralize the approach to write annotation. Abstracts are probably limited to the scientific or scholarly journals and in the periodical publications. Annotations, on the other hand are more descriptive and include critical analysis of the author's background, his/her opinion, writing objective and clarity in delivering a clear idea to the readers.

Knowing the process involved

The second step is to familiarise with the process utilized in developing custom annotated bibliography. The process of understanding involves applying the seasoned skills like precise showing, summarized review and detailed research. When you are done with the basics, move forward to data collection.
Locate the sources and references used for book development, and analyse the importance with priority. Next, give a deep view to the articles and details (facts/details) used to make the content genuine. Further, use the sources and cite them as per the uses in your document.

Finding the nature

Afterwards, find out the nature of the annotation. There are three types of annotations popular among the readers.


The Descriptive type of annotation resembles Abstract to an extent. This type of annotation details the reference and leaves the hypothesis and actual argument on the back seat. It also maintains distance in citing evaluation or criticism of the article developed.

Detailed annotation

This form of annotation deals with the content, argument and the massage of the source. It also includes findings and methodology and seeks answers about author's main idea and the conclusion.


Alike the above two, this type of annotation includes detailed analysis of all aspects of the annotation. It focuses on describing the strength and weakness and the application of the research conclusion.

Credentials of the source

The sources or references used must be verified to estimate the contribution of these to find the solutions of the subject. The assessment of the argument quality will give you an idea about the validity of the source. The basics included are source value, challenges and opportunities in the research problem and the final comments or recommendations made by the author.

Format of the custom annotation bibliography

Though, there is no set format for the bibliography, the writer gets ample freedom to understand the purpose of the assignment and can make the format with relevance. You can also take guidance from your professor to sketch the length, focus and the type of annotation you are going to write. The standard format is given below for getting an idea:


Start with a brief paragraph describing the fundamentals of the source selection and references. You can also cite few sources which were omitted due to the irrelevance with subject. However, you may require describing the reasons of exclusion of the sources and citing them in your introduction. Further, take help from your mentors to understand the applicable writing style. When you have the writing style, make sure to keep the entire document in compliance with the style.

Summarize the material

After deciding the writing style and the type of annotation, you are required to mention a critical commentary of the source evaluation and its proximity with the subject. Since, the length of the custom annotated bibliography is not too long, you have to stick to the concise content to develop the annotation.
People across the globe struggle to know the fundamentals of writing an original bibliography. If you are also searching for effective tips, you can take help from your seniors or professionals in the field.
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