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Annotated Bibliography
This is the "Annotated Bibliography" page of the "Research in the Social Sciences" guide.
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Research in the Social Sciences  

Last Updated: Aug 27, 2015 URL: Print Guide

Annotated Bibliography Print Page


An annotated bibliography is a list of citations to books, articles, and documents. Each citation is followed by a brief (usually about 150 words) description and evaluation of the source -- the annotation. The purpose of the annotation is to inform the reader of the relevance, accuracy, and quality of the sources cited.

For ANTHR 1 you will be required to find and annotate 6 sources.  3 of those sources must be from peer-reviewed, academic journals.  Other possible sources include high-quality popular science magazines, reference materials, and high-quality websites.


Creating an annotated bibliography calls for the application of a variety of intellectual skills:  concise writing, succinct analysis, and informed library research.

First, locate and record citations to books, articles, and documents that may contain useful information and ideas on your topic. Briefly examine and review the actual items. Then choose those works that provide a variety of perspectives on your topic.

Second, cite the book, article, or document using the APA citation.

Third, write a concise annotation that summarizes the central theme of your source.  Include:

  • An evaluation of the authority or background of the author
  • A comment on the intended audience
  • Explain how this work illuminates your research topic


Research Question  Why do domestic dogs possess some social cognitive skills that are not present in wolves? What can this tell us about the evolution of cooperation in humans?

Agnetta, B., Hare, B., and Tomasello, M.  (2000).  Cues to food location that domestic dog (Canis

     familiaris) of different ages do and do not use.  Animal Cognition, 3, 107-112.

Agnetta et al. tested the ability of 16 domestic dogs to use cues provided by humans to find hidden food in 5 different experimental conditions, 4 of which included explicit social cues (gaze) from humans and 1 that did not. The dogs were able to find the food at above chance rates in the conditions that included a behavioral indicator from the human experimenter but were unable to consistently find the food in the absence of a social cue from the human. These results suggest that the domestication process in dogs selected for the ability to respond to human provided cues. The authors also presented a summary of a pilot study in wolves, allowing them to test whether or not this capacity to use social cues from humans is more likely the result of artificial selection during domestication or is a capacity dogs inherited from their wolf ancestors. The wolves were not able to use the social cues from humans as effectively as the dogs, suggesting the capacity to use social cues provided by humans was selected for in the recent evolution of the dog. This paper is relevant to my project because it compares the social cognitive abilities of dogs and wolves.

Source:  Adapted from  “The Annotated Bibliography.”  Research & Learning Services, Cornell University Library


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