Skip to Main Content

Research: How - Information Literacy Toolbox: Presenting Research & Data

Find tutorials on navigating the library website, resources for your research journey through searching, evaluating, & citing, and subject specific guides & databases

Instruct: Presenting Research & Data

Presenting Research and Data Instructor Guide

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to…

  • Effectively write a paper by:
    • Organizing the content in a manner that supports the purposes and format of the writing assignment.
    • Choosing a format that best supports the purposes of the writing assignment and the intended audience.
    • Communicating the desired content clearly.
    • Understanding the target audience.
    • Understanding the connections among information literacy, reading, and writing.
  • Understand what it means to synthesize information:
    • Using multiple sources to create an argument or explore an idea.
    • Recognize that synthesis takes place at every step of the research and writing process.
    • Realize that many writing techniques, including quoting, paraphrasing, and summarizing aid in information synthesis.
    • Become familiar with examples of information synthesis in different disciplines.

For Faculty

Library Resources




Characteristics of academic writing

Academic writing is:

  • Planned and focused: answers the question and demonstrates an understanding of the subject.
  • Structured: is coherent, written in a logical order, and brings together related points and material.
  • Evidenced: demonstrates knowledge of the subject area, supports opinions and arguments with evidence, and is referenced accurately.
  • Formal in tone and style: uses appropriate language and tenses, and is clear, concise, and balanced.

Academic writing is clear, concise, focused, structured, and backed up by evidence. Its purpose is to aid the reader’s understanding.

It has a formal tone and style, but it is not complex and does not require the use of long sentences and complicated vocabulary.

Each subject discipline will have certain writing conventions, vocabulary, and types of discourse that you will become familiar with over the course of your degree. However, there are some general characteristics of academic writing that are relevant across all disciplines.


Annotated bibliographies are lists of resources that include an evaluative summary of each resource.  More than just a summary of the article, annotated bibliographies give you a chance to critique the resources you're finding.  They can also help you determine whether your research question is viable.  Take a look at some of the resourcs on this page to help you write a strong annotated bibliography!

When writing an annotated bibliography, it's helpful to ask yourself these 3 questions for each source:

1. What is this book/journal article/etc really about?  Summarize the main points.  Remember that an annotated bibliography is more than just a summary, however.

2.  How does this resource relate to the other sources in my bibliography?  Is it biased?  Is it basic or advanced?  Who are the authors and how do they compare with the other authors?  Critically analyze your resource and compare it to other resources in your annotated bibliography.

3. How does this resource help or hurt my research?  What is the unique information?  How does this uphold or change your research focus? Should you include it in your paper?  Why or why not?

The point of an annotated bibliography is to tell the story of your research and your thinking process so that when you sit down to write the paper, you have a strong foundation of thought and information.