As you know from previous courses, an annotated bibliography describes and evaluates literature on a topic in a collection of succinct, one-paragraph entries. There are two important points to
know about an annotated bibliography.
1. Bibliography entries must be based on a critical examination of studies. Just because an article appears in a peer-reviewed journal does not mean it is without flaws (see Activity 2). An
annotated bibliography entry that does not evaluate the merits of the research and its relevance to your purposes is of little value to you.
2. Researchers often refer to their annotated bibliography when writing literature reviews. If you do your annotated bibliography with care and skill, it will be invaluable, as you can use it
to create your literature review, saving much time and effort. The other assignments in this section are premised upon this idea.
If you have kept the same topic area throughout all of your EDU courses, you have used approximately 40 different articles to complete previous assignments, including previous annotated
bibliography assignments. If you have changed your topic area, the number of sources on your current topic area would, of course, be fewer than 40. Your dissertation proposal will have a
literature review of 40-80 pages and discuss many articles on your topic area (likely more than 100).
This assignment requires you to compile an Annotated Bibliography of 40 entries (twice as many is ideal!), 85% of which must be from the past five years. Each annotated entry must concisely
summarize key aspects of a study—participants, purpose, research design and methods, data analysis, key findings—and include a thoughtful evaluation of the significance of the study’s
findings and conclusions as they relate to your topic. In order to write quality entries, you must understand each study—what the researchers did, why they did it, and what they found and
concluded. Be sure you paraphrase all content, following the Academic Integrity guidelines to insure that your work is your own. Here is a familiar example:
(Just so you know how much literature to read, but not necessarily include, in your Proposal Literature Review: You will need to exhaust the literature, which means you must keep reviewing
articles until you reach saturation and are no longer learning anything new.)
All of the entries should be relevant to your goal of developing a research problem that contributes to theory in a topic area and to designing a study that addresses the problem. Organize the
entries thematically into roughly the following categories:
• Seminal Articles
• Issues and Debates
• Key Findings
You will probably want to add categories specific to your topic area, and you may modify the recommended categories to organize the entries in a way that makes most sense. Be sure to
include works that provide alternate or opposing perspectives on the proposed topic area in order to demonstrate unbiased research. Focus particularly on works that address main ideas in the
field, describe areas of controversy, and indicate areas of incomplete knowledge and relate to your envisioned study’s problem, purpose, and research questions. It may be helpful to create a
spreadsheet of the studies in your topic area, which includes, among other things, the constructs studied, how the constructs were operatationalized, and the findings. Sometimes having the
summary information all viewable at one time helps identify a problem. Include historical and germinal works as well as current works.
Your goal in this assignment is to identify all of the peer-reviewed papers you will need to do subsequent assignments in this course and all or almost all you need to write your Concept Paper in
your first DIS course (you will check for new articles on your topic before finalizing your Concept Paper.)
Hint: Don’t neglect dissertations and theses. They often have excellent reference lists.
This bibliography will become the Appendix to your Concept Paper. It will support your problem statement and literature review. It will provide you with models and ideas for the design of your
study. Do not rush this assignment. Ensure that entries you have used previously are still relevant and are written to standard.
Important Suggestion: Read through the remaining assignments in this course and take notes toward completing them as you are reviewing articles and compiling your Bibliography. If you do
this assignment well, the rest of the assignments in this section will almost write themselves!
You Faculty member may ask you to add, delete, or rewrite entries and resubmit this assignment. If you have questions about the appropriateness of an article, check with your Faculty member.
If you are unsure of how to write an entry, submit a single entry for review before doing the assignment.
Submit a paper comprised of at least 40 annotated bibliography entries
Length: 150-250 words per entry
Your paper should demonstrate thoughtful consideration of the ideas and concepts that are presented in the course and provide new thoughts and insights relating directly to this topic. Your
paper should reflect scholarly writing and current APA standards. Review APA Form and Style.
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