Researching Your Career

Annotated Bibliography Assignment:
Researching Your Career / Industry
Part 1:
Using the Occupational Outlook Handbook, write 2-3 paragraphs summarizing facts about the
career or industry you choose. Watch the Occupational Outlook Handbook video in the library
online guide ( to get acquainted with using the handbook. In your
paragraphs, answer the following questions:
What are the duties and responsibilities of the career/industry?
What qualifications and skills are needed and desirable in this profession?
What is the pay range for this career?
What is the career outlook, i.e. what is the growth rate and is it above or below the
average growth rate of all careers?
Part 2
Using the Gale Directory Library, select the Encyclopedia of Associations – National
Organizations of the U.S. and search for your career. You should find the name of the
professional organization for your career or industry. You may follow the provided link to the
professional association or search for the name via the web (Google).
Provide a 1-2 paragraph summary of the professional association’s website, answering some of
the following questions (or others that interest you):
Does it have a link to job listings?
What are some of the upcoming events or programs sponsored by the association?
What benefits do you receive by becoming a member?
Does the association publish any reports or publications?
Part 3
Trade publications are magazines, newsletters, and other publications that are written for
professionals who work in a particular career/industry. They keep professionals informed about
trends and best practices within their fields.
There are many ways to find trade publications and there is no one-size-fits-all way to locate
them for all careers. I suggest the following tips:
Once you have located the professional association (in Part 2), see if they list any
publications. Then, you may search our E-journals list to see if own the trade publication.
From there, you may browse issues.
Try searching the databases, using a subject term for your career, for example
education, and then limiting to “trade publications,” usually an option in the left-hand
Still having trouble? Contact Britt McGowan at [email protected] and she will help
you identify one for your field.
Part 4: Putting it all together. Formatting the Annotated Bibliography.
While a bibliography is a list of works (for example: books, articles, websites) cited or consulted
for a particular topic, an annotated bibliography also provides an evaluation and description of
the works. So, you will have a list of citations with a critical summary of each. Annotated
bibliography assignments will vary from class to class as each instructor will want you to
evaluate the works you read in different ways.
Luckily, for this class, if you have used the guidelines above while writing your paragraphs, then
your annotations are finished! All you have to do now is format the paper into an Annotated
So, you will need the citations of the sources you consulted. Here is an example from the
Occupational Outlook Handbook in MLA Format:
United States Department of Labor. Bureau of Labor Statistics. “Art Directors.” Occupational Outlook
Handbook, 2012-2013. Web. 30 July 2013. <>
Then, you will double-space your annotations (paragraphs) under each source. An example can
be found in the online guide.
Part 5: Take the 5 Question Quiz about Career Resources and forward the results to your
instructor. And you’re done!
Remember to ask Britt if you have any questions!
Britt McGowan
[email protected]