What is a bibliography and how to write it

30 Jun

A bibliography is not just “works cited.” It is all the relevant material you drew upon to write the paper the reader holds.

It is a detailed listing of the books, journals, magazines, or online sources that an author has used in researching and writing their work. It is important to note that it must be a complete list including every source used during the research phase – not just the ones referenced in the text in any styles of writing.
1588148672How to write a bibliography
A bibliography differs from a works cited page because a bibliography includes any works that were referenced to write the paper, not merely the works that were cited in the paper.

There is another type of bibliography that is worth mentioning – the annotated bibliography. An annotated bibliography definition is, for all intents and purposes, identical to a standard bibliography; however, there is one key difference. The author, publisher and page information is concluded with a short description of the actual content or quality of the source used.

Bibliographies differ depending on what style of writing you are using. Some of the different styles of writing include the Modern Language Association (MLA), Chicago Manual of Style (CMS), and American Psychological Association (APA).

MLA 8 uses a Works Cited page, which lists the source entries in alphabetical order. In APA, references are listed alphabetically in a Reference list. Chicago/Turabian style uses either the author-date style, which uses a Reference list or the notes-bibliography style, which uses a Bibliography.

The MLA format is primarily used for English Literature and other disciplines of the humanities. If you are using the MLA format, then you should keep a track of all the papers, books, films, internet articles, and any other source that you consulted while writing the paper.

The Chicago Style format is primarily used for history texts. You may hear Chicago style called Turabian style, as well. Turabian is simply the shorter student version of Chicago style.
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The American Psychological Association style of writing is used for psychology and other sciences and social sciences. For APA style, the format is similar to Chicago author-date style.

If you ask a question of how to do a bibliography correctly, you should start with the following simple thing which is the most important. In order to gather all of the information necessary to draft a bibliography, you should keep a list of EVERY book, website, magazine or periodical that you read in preparation for your paper. Eventually, this list will comprise your bibliography.

Books are the bibliography format with which you’re probably most familiar. Books follow this pattern:
Author Last Name, Author First Name. (Publication Year) Title. Publisher’s City: Publisher. Page numbers.

Periodicals remove the publisher city and name and add the title of the article and the volume or issue number of the periodical.
Author Last Name, Author First Name. (Publication Date—could be more than a year) “Article Title.”Publication Title, Vol. #. (Issue #), Page numbers.

Document This Info For Web Sites:
The name of the author
The name of the editor
The name of the company which posted the website
The URL or web address
The date you accessed the page

Because web sources are time-sensitive, meaning that web content can change day by day, it is important to include the day of retrieval and the URL from which you quoted the material. You include this in a retrieval statement.
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Note that you should not break the Internet address of the link, even if it requires its own line. Very long URLs, such as those that occur when using an online database, can be shortened by removing the retrieval code. (The retrieval code usually consists of a long string of unintelligible letters and numbers following the end point “htm” or “html.” Remove everything that occurs after that point to shorten.)

Author. (Date of Internet Publication—could be more than a year) “Document Title.” Title of Publication. Retrieved on: Date from Full Web Address, starting with http://

If there is no author listed, the document’s title should be used in place of the author’s name. Use the entire title but not the subtitle. Subtitles are anything appearing after a colon (:).

When writing a bibliography, remember that the purpose is to communicate to the reader, in a standardized manner, the sources that you have used in sufficient detail to be identified. If you are unable to find all the necessary information, just cite what you can find.