BIO 205: Ecology

Invasive Species

What is an Annotated Bibliography

bibliography is a list of sources used in research. The assignment for BIO 205: Ecology should follow the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association, 7th edition guidelines for citing resources. 

An annotation is a short description or summary of the work. Typically an annotation is about 150 words and includes information about the relevance, accuracy, and quality of work.

Noodle Tools is a great way for you to create an annotated bibliography. You can set Noodle Tools to APA style to aid you in properly citing your references. NWC students learn to use this tool in FYS class.

Librarians are available to help if you need it!

Questions to Consider When Annotating

Questions to help with a concise summary:

  • What is the topic that this source covers?
  • In brief, what does the author say about the topic and the topic’s importance or significance (major names, dates, places, developments, themes/thesis)?

Questions to help with a concise evaluation:

  • How familiar with the relevant material for the topic is the author? Are the materials indicated, and are they mostly primary? mostly secondary?
  • Are there any important things about the topic that the source does not cover? If so, does the author explain why?
  • How well-written is the source (clarity, organization)?
  • How much do the author and the source help you (or readers in general) know and understand about your topic? Why?

How to Evaluate a Website


  • Who is the author of this site or page?
  • What are his / her credentials (occupation, position, education, years of experience)?
  • Is the author an expert on this topic?


  • What institution or organization supports this information?
  • What is the viewpoint or bias of this group?


  • What is the purpose of this site?  Why was it put on the web?
  • What opinions are expressed by the author?


  • When was the site last updated?
  • Are statistics and other facts correctly cited?
  • How does this information compare with other sources?


NoodleTools is an online citation and bibliography tool that allows you to create accurate, correct bibliographies. Because it's web-based, you can add citation information from multiple locations, and the citation information can be accessed from anywhere.

To use NoodleTools, log in using your regular NWC email and password.

Getting Started in NoodleTools


How to Evaluate a Book

When determining whether a book is something you want to investigate further, look at a few items:

  • Title
  • Table of contents
    This gives clues as to what material will be covered.
  • Preface or introduction
    Often the authors summarize the arguments they make in the book, outlining the discussion that will occur.
  • Author’s affiliations
    Check the biographies of the authors. Often there's a summary; if not, try a quick Google search on the author. 
  • Date
  • Notes or Citations
    You want to make sure the sources you’re relying on are verified and checked their statements.  Footnotes or endnotes will indicate that. 
  • Index and bibliography
    Both an index and a bibliography make it easier for other researchers to do their studies.  The presence of these features helps indicate that the work is indeed scholarly. 
  • Publisher
    The type of publisher -- academic, trade, general -- can tell you more about the type of book it is or the audience for which it's intended.