FYP Tip #3 || Annotated Bibliography

This is the second week into the school term. Ideally, you should already know what you want aspect of your text you want to work on, which sources you will need and have already started gathering them (if you can’t get some of the texts you need for your Final Year Project, refer to my post on how to use NTU’s document delivery to get them for free.) Books can take up to 8 weeks to arrive, so you are very close to the deadline that you can order books and reasonably expect them to arrive on time, with enough time for you to read the information. In other words, its right about the time when you should be starting on your annotated bibliography for the sources you already have.

But what on earth is an annotated bibliography and what can it do for me?

Simply put, its a bibliography with a summary of important points/ points of interest within your source. While you are not required to hand in an annotated bibliography for your Final Year Project (for the English department at the time of writing), it is quite useful for your own reference, especially when you start to have an increasing number of sources to review. Most advisors will probably, at one point of time or another, also ask you to start something like this to help you keep track of sources.

How do I start the annotated bibliography?

Purdue has some examples which you can make use of, but I’ve seen people just making written notes in a notebook or notes within the document itself. (While I do encourage some sort of order, I know my annotated bibliography was mainly notes in margins, lots of sticky tabs courtesy of A*Star and time numbers scribbled onto my working drafts.)