How to Do an Annotated Bibliography in MLA

Updated March 23, 2017
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Annotated bibliographies provide the reader more information than a works-cited page. Write a Modern Language Association (MLA) annotated bibliography to include bibliographic data. Follow bibliography information with additional information about the sources you reference in your paper. Give the reader a snapshot of why your sources are appropriate and to attribute your work to its rightful owners.

Create a separate annotated bibliography page at the end of an academic paper. Center the title, "Annotated Bibliography." Enter bibliography information for each source. Indent every line but the first line, according to a California State University Northridge example of an MLA annotated bibliography.

Provide the author's name using last-name-first format. Write, for example, "Goldberg, Natalie."

Enter the book, magazine or journal title. Follow this example: Writing Down the Bones. Italicize titles.

Give the publishing information. Write the publisher's city. Follow with a colon and the publisher's name followed by a comma. Enter the year of publication. Write, for instance, Boston: Shambhala, 1986.

End the bibliographic data with your source's medium. Enter for a book, "Print."

Follow bibliography information with an annotation about each cited book, article or online information. Provide one or more of the following types of information, according to the Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL). Provide summary information such as main arguments and topics covered. Evaluate cited materials for usefulness. Reflect on how each source fits into your research. Let the reader know, for example, how a journal article helped shape your conclusions.

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  • End each segment in an MLA-style bibliography with a period.


  • Do not use quotation marks for book, magazine or journal titles.

About the Author

Alyson Paige has a master's degree in canon law and began writing professionally in 1998. Her articles specialize in culture, business and home and garden, among many other topics.