I've worked through a major publisher to contribute applied portions to several textbooks, and am listed in the acknowledgements sections. These were not one-day content reviews and singular practitioner projects, but ongoing contributions spanning over a year. I currently have the books cited under the work experience section in my industry resume, via employment through the publisher while citing the primary authors and disambiguating my role in the bullets. However, as I apply for a second graduate degree, I am wondering if the books should be moved up to the publications section (still citing the main authors and not myself, of course).

In case this is relevant, the publications section currently has four direct authorship items, so isn't empty. Still, they're nothing special, and I'm concerned about down-playing the textbook work in my apps.

Similar questions have been asked about generic contributions in papers, minimal contributions, and paper authorship as an anonymous team, but I am unsure if this advice applies to textbook-scale work.

  • Failing that, it's one heck of a thing to put on a cover letter.
    – J. Mini
    Jan 31, 2021 at 23:14

2 Answers 2


You can put anything on your CV that you think contributes to your professional standing. For honesty, I'd suggest using a separate section, however, not the "publications" section unless you are listed as an author. Perhaps something like "Contributions to published work" or similar.

Overstating the case can have a negative impact, not the positive one you want.


The universal convention in academia, and I’m guessing anywhere else, is that listing something in your CV under “Publication” implies that you’re an author or coauthor of the work.

So if you’re not a named author but only listed in the acknowledgements section, you should not list the work in the Publications section. It would be seen as dishonest or at least misleading and reflect poorly on you, even if you added some asterisk or footnote to indicate your role.

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