Academic Article Annotation Assignment

Teacher instructions: Copy and paste these instructions into your own course to use with your students. Be sure to review the instructions prior to posting them — you may want to make adjustments depending on how you plan to assess annotations or due to your specific discipline and/or assignment. If you are using Canvas, Blackboard Learn or D2L Brightspace, it may be beneficial to have students annotate in small groups. If you are using another LMS, it could be helpful to have students answer specific questions, as listed below, so that each questions is addressed equally. The questions are adapted from political science professor Heather K. Evans.

Instructions for students

Purpose: Collaboratively annotating the reading will allow you to share perspectives, ask and answer each other’s questions, and make visible reflections and connections about the text. You can review a quick-start guide for how to add annotations.

Instructions: As you review the text, add at least 2-3 annotations. Here’s some guidance for what you might include in your annotations:

  1. Identify the major research questions explored in the article and paraphrase them in your own words.
  2. Summarize: What is the state of prior research on this topic? What research gaps does the author intend to ameliorate?
  3. Summarize the major theoretical propositions.
  4. Answer: How does the author use the concepts from these theoretical propositions in their study?
  5. Identify and summarize the data that are used to examine the research questions and test the theoretical propositions.
  6. Identify and summarize the major findings and the overall implications of the study.
  7. Answer: What would you challenge or critique about this study?
  8. At the end of the text, add an annotation to summarize what you believe to be the key ideas/points of the text, or ask a question that you feel was left unanswered, or which you’re still unsure about.
  9. Reply to a classmate with an additive annotation (add to the conversation by answering their question or extending their response). Here are some ideas on how to start an additive response to a classmate:
    • What did you mean by …
    • Did you consider …/ You might consider …
    • I connect with …/It made me think …

Important notes about annotating: 

  • Make sure you hit “post” after you complete your annotation, or else your annotation will not be saved.
  • Make sure it says “post to [this class]” and not “post to only me,” or else your annotation won’t be able to be reviewed.
  • If someone replies to your annotation, you will not receive a notification. Check back periodically to continue the conversation!