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English: Bibliographic Essay

Bibliographic Essay Explanation

What is a Bibliographic Essay?

  • A bibliographic essay is a critical essay in which the writer identifies and evaluates the core works of research within a discipline or sub-discipline.

What is the purpose of a Bibliographic Essay?

  • A bibliographic essay is written to summarize and compare a number of sources on a single topic. The goal of this essay is not to prove anything about a subject, but rather to provide a general overview of the field. By looking through multiple books and articles, you can provide your reader with context for the subject you are studying, and recommend a few reputable sources on the topic.

Example of a Bibliographic Essay

Steps to Creating a Bibliographic Essay

  1. Start by searching our databases.  Think about your topic and brainstorm search terms before beginning. 
  2. Skim and review articles to determine whether they fit your topic.
  3. Evaluate your sources. 
  4. Write your bibliographic essay. Your essay should be organized so that others can understand the sources and evaluate your comprehension of them and their presentation of specific data, themes, etc.
    • Structure
      • Introduction
        • Statement summarizing the focus of your bibliographic essay.
        • Introduce the texts to be summarized.
          • Give the title of each source following citation guidelines.
          • Name the author of each source.
          • Give important background information about authors, texts to be summarized, and the general topic from which the texts are drawn.
      • Body
        • Each paragraph should include:
          • Information from more than one source
          • Use citations to indicate which material comes from which source. (Be careful not to plagiarize!)
          • Show similarities and differences between the different sources.
          • Represent texts fairly.
      • Conclusion
        • Write a conclusion reminding the reader of the most significant themes you found and the ways they connect to the overall topic.