Professor Belli | Fall 2022 | City Tech

Unit 2: Reflective Annotated Bibliography Assignment

In this Writing Workshop, we’ll be revisiting & reviewing the Unit 2: Reflective Annotated Bibliography (RAB) assignment together. I’ll be rolling out content periodically here over the next few weeks, as we advance to each stage of the assignment. Later this week (after reading / commenting on your individual research question posts), I’ll be sharing additional advice for how to for further focus/narrow/refine your research questions. And next week we’ll be deep-diving into the act of research itself (where to find sources, how to evaluate them, etc.). I’ll also be adding more details about due dates, samples of student work, resources for quoting and citation, and much more. But for now, we will begin with the idea of research as discovery.

Hold on though … before you go any further, go back and re-read the assignment (and make any additional annotations, as necessary) to refresh your memory on what the purpose and expectations of Unit 2 are. After you’ve finished that, keep on reading here …

Research as Discovery (Wednesday, 10/12)

A friendly reminder that we are continuing the conversation about our assumptions, expectations, and experiences with research in the Class Discussion What Counts as Research?? … so be sure to check that out, read through the additional resource and prompts I posted this week, catch up on your classmates’ comments, and add your additional thoughts there.

Now on to some new content! Below is an audio file I created for you to explore this concept (and its importance for a successful Unit 2 outcome) even further. Listen / annotate it, and then drop a comment below with what resonated with you / what you took away from it, as well as any questions you might have.

Research as Discovery (Professor Belli)

Week 10: Creating Successful Source Entries + Looking Forward to Final Draft of RAB

I’ve created additional content for this Unit 2 Writing Workshop, covering source entries, citation, titles, summary, rhetorical analysis, types of sources, research strategies, & what’s coming up next week (among other things). Click on the audio link below, and then listen & annotate it.

Unit 2 Workshop, Additional Content (Professor Belli)

*Note: the audio file fails to mention the 4th required component of the source entry: quotables. My apologies for that, and please don’t forget to include quotables at the end of each source entry.

Week 11 Content

[Examples of Unit 2 Student Work]


[Cover Letter Instructions]

An important component of any writing is your reflection on it. This Reflection is your Cover Letter, and must be included with your final draft of Unit 2.

  • Your Cover Letter should be 2-3 paragraphs, single-spaced (note: this letter does not count toward the minimum length of your Reflective Annotated Bibliography)
  • Address it to your reader (that’s me! e.g., Dear Professor Belli …)
  • Write in first person (it can be informal/personal)
  • Include the Cover Letter as the first page of your Dropbox submission file
  • Submissions without a Reflective Cover letter will not be accepted & will receive no credit

This Cover Letter presents the process behind your Reflective Annotated Bibliography, and therefore doesn’t restate what your Reflective Annotated Bibliography shares (the product) but rather discusses your drafting/revising process for this assignment.

Even though this is your Final Draft submission to me, you should have gone through a number of steps before you hand it in (pre-drafts such as brainstorming, freewriting, outlining; drafts of different components of the assignment; revision based on my written feedback and peer review; conferences with me and Writing Center tutors; revision, editing, proofreading). This Cover Letter is a thoughtful reflection on how your Reflective Annotated Bibliography has changed along the way.

Respond to the questions below holistically, in paragraph form (not in bullets, or in any particular order). But also feel free to add any other questions/concerns you have about your Reflective Annotated Bibliography or the writing process.

  • What is your research question and argument, and how have they evolved throughout the Unit 2 project?
  • Describe your drafting and revision process. What was most successful? Most challenging?  How did you approach those challenges? How did my written feedback and peer review (along with any discussions you may have had with me in my Office Hours or tutoring at the Writing Center) help you with these revisions?
  • What’s the primary question about your Reflective Annotated Bibliography that you most would like to get feedback on, and why?
  • Choose two elements of your Reflective Annotated Bibliography–one that you think works well, and one that feels less successful–and describe why.
  • What would you continue to work on in further revision?

Let’s Discuss!

Use the comment section below to ask any & all questions about the assignment more generally as well. As always, review all materials (and click all links) before asking questions, as you may find the answer you’re looking for there. But if not, ask away!


  1. Indira

    Hello, I am a little confuse of what we have to do for Friday. I went to the schedule and it says we should be working on the reflective annotated bibliography assignment that it has to go with your comments on our post about what we would like to research. I listened to the audio, I annotated. What I have to submit on google form?

    • Jill Belli

      Hi Indira! The GoogleForm presents an activity guiding you through freewriting and research (to help further refine your topic). If you click on the link, you will see the instructions in the form itself. I would encourage you to wait for my feedback on the research question posts submitted last night first (I am aiming to have that feedback back to students this morning).

      • Indira

        Ok, I will wait, my fear is that I won’t have enough time to finish the work. I submitted mine on 10/11 and I would like to finish, I am trying to manage my time with my other assignments.

        • Jill Belli

          I understand (and appreciate) your sense of urgency, but please keep in mind that your professor has multiple classes and many (many) students — as well as other work responsibilities — and that she is providing you with detailed feedback within a few hours of an assignment due date (yours is already available). This is also why extending deadlines to midnight (which students repeatedly request) is a double-edged sword …

          • Indira

            Absolutely! Thank you for the talk at your office hour.

  2. Indira

    Research as Discovery audio, what I took away from it is that we also need to write as discovery, we should start with a question rather than starting with an statement, an argument or something we need to prove. We need to keep on mind that we probably won’t have a definitive answer also that research is no lineal but recursive and it is true, any step we take will lead us to another step.

  3. Jayleen

    What resonated with me in the video was that we as researchers tend to be biased and only look for evidence that supports our ideals and tend to ignore evidence that goes against our thesis. This can do more harm than good and make us more close-minded to new ideas.

  4. Lizbeth

    What I took away from the audio video was that research is about discovery. Its best to start researching with a question that we have because we are more open to learning new things. We shouldn’t start with a thesis because it will lead to us being closed minded

  5. Doriani

    What I took away from the audio video is that discovering is being able to be open minded. Approaching research with an open minded question will encourage better research and answers. Finding multiple answers, truths and meaning will enforce your research instead of just looking for one answer, this is why we are courage to start research with a question instead approaching with a thesis. I am a little confused with the overall assignments, a lot of times I don’t know how I should start, where and where I should turn in assignments. there’s a lot of links that just confused me.

  6. Mozeer_U

    What I took away from the audio video was that research is not liner but recursive. This means research is not going to a certain point or end. But instead it opens up more paths and can even change the person that is doing the research. Research changes not our ideas but our morality and makes us into new people having stored new information in our mind. It can change forever our ideas forever or it can stay the same depending on how it impacts you.

    • Brianna Santiago

      When I listen to the research discovery audio that was left I learned that through all the activities it was developing us into the project that we have to do. and also starting off the essay with a question that is important and ties into what I’ll be talking about because research isn’t always facts it’s also the process behind questioning so adding a question in the research is best to start off in the introduction. and also to add a good thesis statement in the essay. research isn’t an easy quick process it takes time development, and thinking .

  7. briansook

    what I learned from the video be open minded

  8. Jill Belli

    Hi everyone!

    I’ve created additional content for this Unit 2 Writing Workshop, covering source entries, citation, titles, summary, rhetorical analysis, types of sources, research strategies, & what’s coming up next week (among other things). Look for the new section in the post above entitled, Creating Successful Source Entries + Looking Forward to Final Draft of RAB.

    After listening to + annotating the audio file, please comment below about what you learned and asking any questions you might have. Thanks!

  9. Lizbeth

    Hi everyone, one thing I learned was about the type of sources we can use for this project. I was wondering if we could use videos and after listening to the audio it answered my question.

  10. Jayleen

    What I learned more about was rhetorical analysis, I wasn’t very sure about how it worked but now I have an idea of how I can incorporate it into my source entry.

  11. Brianna Santiago

    Hi professor , Quick question does it matter what fount size the cover letter is I wrote it in a size 12 .

    • Jill Belli

      Any normal-sized font is OK (e.g., I use size 12 Calibri). Thanks for checking in to ask!

      • Brianna Santiago

        Thank you professor

  12. Brianna Santiago

    hello, After I found the audio file and carefully listened to it I realized the different resources for the research,an idea on how to write my introduction as well as the source entry we all have been doing has different genre for each and how it is applied to our unit 2 annotated bibliography.

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