Copyright

Creating a Bibliography: Lesson for Kids

Instructor: Laurie Smith
A biblio-what? A bibliography! This useful tool is important as you become a writer and begin composing research reports and other academic writing. In this lesson, you'll learn all about bibliographies, what they are, why you need to write one, and how to create an amazing one!

What Is a Bibliography?

So, you have to write a bibliography. Now what? A bibliography is a descriptive list of sources used in preparing written work. In fact, the word comes from ancient Greek: biblion, meaning 'book,' and -graphia, meaning 'to write.' This tool is important because it identifies publication information about the sources used, so that your readers know where that information originally came from.

Why You Need One

You need to write a bibliography every time you use someone else's work in your writing. This is called citing, or giving credit to, a source. It's important because in order to use information that someone else created, you need to give them credit to avoid any legal or academic consequences. Another reason why it's so important is so that you don't commit plagiarism, which is the act of taking someone else's words and using them as your own. Plagiarism is a big deal and can lead to major consequences. So, always cite your sources!

Types of Citation

There are many ways to write a bibliography depending on what you're writing about. The Modern Language Association, or MLA, is used mostly for writing in humanities. Humanities are subjects such as literature, languages, history, and art. Another style is the American Psychological Association, or APA, format. This is used mainly for writing in social sciences like education, law, science, and psychology. There's also the Chicago style, which is used less often for both subjects. It's the oldest and most detailed manual. This lesson will focus on MLA formatting.

Rules to Remember

Here are some important tips to remember when writing a bibliography:

  • All bibliography entries follow a pattern based on the type of source being used
  • Make sure your sources are in alphabetical order by first word
  • Double space between entries
  • Indent all lines 5 spaces, except the first line
  • If a source doesn't have an author, use the title in place of the author's name
  • Format the author's name like this: Last name, First name

Books

Let's first look at books, starting with fiction & non-fiction books:

Here's our pattern:

  • Author. Title of Book. Publisher, Copyright date.

Here's an example:

  • Yolen, Jane. The Encounter. Harcourt, 1996.

Encyclopedias (print)

Here's our pattern:

  • ''Article Title.'' Name of Encyclopedia. Edition, Copyright date.

Here's an example:

  • ''Zebra''. World Book Encyclopedia. 3rd ed., 1996.

Magazines

Now, let's look at how to cite things from magazines (both online and in print):

Magazine Article (Online)

Here's our pattern:

  • Author. ''Title of Article.'' Journal Name, Date article was published, URL. Access date.

And here's our example:

  • McGrath, Brian. ''Breaking Barriers in Toys.'' Time For Kids, 21 Oct. 2016, http://www.timeforkids.com/news/breaking-barriers-toys/480956. Accessed 31 Nov. 2016.

Magazine Article (Print)

Here's our pattern:

    • Author. ''Title of Article.'' Name of Magazine. Date (day month year), Pages.

And here's our example:

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account
Support