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BIO 180: Nutrition: Annotating and Summarizing

Questions to Answer

You should be able to answer these questions as your read and they will ensure that your summary is 


  • Is this relevant to my research? How/how not?
  • What do I know about the research from the abstract. What questions do I have?


  • Why did the authors do this study?
  • What problem is the study trying to solve?
  • How is this research unique?
  • How is this research related to my project?
  • What other research exists in relation to this topic?

Discussion / Conclusion

  • What did the researchers conclude? Why?
  • Are the findings unique and supported by other work in the field?


  • How was this research conducted?


  • What data did the study produce?
  • What major factors could affect the results?

This list adapted from University of New Mexico's Biology 203L: Ecology and Evolution Guide

Guide to Annotating

As you read each section:

  • Put a * next to anything that is particularly helpful for your summary
  • Highlight words that you need to look up
  • Put a ? next to any passages that seem particularly confusing, especially after you read them a few times
  • Ask questions in the margins
  • Summarize important things in the margins
  • Generally take quick notes in the margins

After you read:

  • Underline the most important sentence in the section
  • Restate that sentence in your own word
  • Make sure you understand the section as a whole and check out the list of questions on the left