Word: How to Create an Annotated Bibliography

Posted April 4, 2011 by Aaron St. Clair in Microsoft Word

An annotated bibliography is often required in written assignments; however, many people are not familiar with the formatting required. In this screencast and tutorial, I demonstrate the steps required to create an annotated bibliography in proper MLA format using Microsoft Word.

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I have included a complete example of an Annotated Bibliography PDF Annotated Bibliography Example for your reference.

Here is a screencast walking through the process.

These directions will work for both 2007 and 2010 versions of Word. Please click on the pictures for additional details.

Open Microsoft Word to a new, blank document.

An annotated bibliography requires the pages to be numbered. To set this up, click the Insert tab, click on Page Number in the Header & Footer section, hover over Top of Page and choose Plain Number 3.

Insert Page Numbers

This brings your cursor into the header of your document, in front of the page number. Type your last name in and double click below the header section of your document to stop editing the header.

Type last name in front of page number

My personal preference is to write content before formatting, so I’ll explain the formatting in that manner.

In your Home tab, make sure Font Size is 12. Make sure Styles is set to No Spacing. Make sure Text Align Left is selected.

Check For Format

Start at the top of your document, and type your name. Press enter.

Type your professor’s name. Press enter.
Type the course. Press enter.
Type the current date. (Day Month Year) Press enter.
Type “Annotated Bibliography” or another title of the Bibliography. Press enter.

Name and Title

Now you’re ready to enter your bibliographies:

Type the MLA Citation for your source. Press enter.
Type your annotation about the source. Press enter.

First Source

Now, edit your formatting:

Press Ctrl+a to highlight your entire document. In the Paragraph section of your Home tab, click Line and Paragraph spacing and click 2.0.

Set Double Space

Highlight your title and select Align Text Center.

Center the Title

Highlight the MLA Citation for your first source, and then right click inside the highlighted area and click Paragraph.

Right Click Citation

On the Indents and Spacing tab, under Indentation, choose “Hanging” from the Special: dropdown menu. Enter “0.5” into the By box. Next, make sure that Line spacing: is set to Double. Click OK.

Center the Title

Now highlight the annotation for the citation and in the Home tab, click Increase Indent.

Increase Indent

Coninue this format for each citation and annotation.

Remember that you still need to indent the first sentence of each of your annotations.

Remember The Tab

 

 

About Aaron St. Clair

Aaron St. Clair is a tech guru studying Computer Science at Appalachian State University in Boone, North Carolina. When he's not tinkering with new gadgets, modding systems, or slaving away at the mercy of the Tech-Recipe overlords, you can find him exploring the high country.
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The Conversation

Follow the reactions below and share your own thoughts.

  • John D. Teel

    I still can’t get Word to format my citations into an annotated bibliography. See below I am using Word 2010

    John D. Teel

    Michael Brock

    EN2100

    4/8/2014

    Annotated Bibliography
    (Auwater, P. G. et. al, 2012)
    (Bardhan-Quallen, 2005)
    (Blum, 2013)
    (Byrnie, 2000)
    (Goldman, MD FACP & Horowitz, MD, 2003)
    (Lahita, 2004)
    (Venes, M.S.J., 2009)
    (Wright, 2002)

    • http://www.tech-recipes.com/ Aaron St. Clair

      It looks like you’re using the References > Manage Sources to create your MLA sources, then hitting Insert Citation, and picking your citations. This is not what’s explained to do in the tutorial… When you insert your citations using this method, word formats it how it wants to, and not the proper way to accommodate the annotations.

      I recommend using a service like Oslis’s citation maker, EasyBib, or any other citation maker, to create the actual citations. You then must type in your annotation, then format the document as this tutorial describes.