Developing a Corequisite Writing Textbook

How Two Novices Handled the Complex Nature of Open Textbook Production


  • Dawn Atkinson Montana Technological University
  • Stacey Corbitt Montana Technological University



complexities of open textbook production, concurrent verbalization, corequisite textbooks, novice textbook authors, ongoing textbook development


Despite the growing body of scholarship focused on Open Educational Resources (OERs), studies tracking open textbook production are exceedingly rare. To gain insight into the complexities associated with open textbook development, this article’s authors used concurrent verbalization and pre- and post-concurrent verbalization interviews to document writing episodes while composing their first coursebook, an open-source text designed for corequisite course pairings of writing fundamentals and introduction to technical writing. Corequisite classes combine content-area instruction with explicit skill-building opportunities, and although commercial publishing houses do produce corequisite textbooks for traditional general education courses, the authors were impelled by the need to create a specialized coursebook for a STEM-focused writing corequisite. Qualitative content analysis of the data collected during ongoing coursebook development revealed how the novice textbook authors navigated complexities when sourcing material for the book, formatting content, and embedding hyperlinks into chapters. Open textbook development offers a variety of professional development opportunities, and the details provided herein could be instructive to others embarking on open coursebook projects and inspire further inquiry into ongoing open textbook production. This paper also exposes the dynamic interaction between textbook content as designed and operationalized, offering implications for the research field of materials development.

Author Biographies

Dawn Atkinson, Montana Technological University

Dawn Atkinson directs the Writing Program at Montana Technological University in Butte, Montana. Her research interests include textbook development and use; textbook writing expertise; and the reading and writing practices used by university students.

Stacey Corbitt, Montana Technological University

Stacey Corbitt is an instructor in the Writing Program at Montana Technological University in Butte, Montana. She teaches courses at all levels and uses her professional writing and editing experience to help students develop and master academic and workplace writing skills.



How to Cite

Atkinson, D., & Corbitt, S. (2022). Developing a Corequisite Writing Textbook: How Two Novices Handled the Complex Nature of Open Textbook Production. IARTEM E-Journal, 14(1), 1-21.