syllabus for PDF course

This is the draft syllabus for the Summer 2014 course. Jump to Word Syllabus.


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Here’s the promo video I made when I ran the first course years ago:


When and why PDFs are used                                                          Week 1

  • What is a PDF?
  • Why are PDFs used?
  • Why are PDFs used in publishing?

Features that set PDF editing apart from hard copy

  • Viewing options
  • Markup techniques
  • Drawing tools
  • Setting tool properties

Including notes

Search tool


Beyond the e-pencil, Annotations                                                        Week 2

  • Limitations
  • Stamps
  • Proofreader’s stamps
  • Dynamic stamps
  • Create and install custom stamps
  • Signatures and initials

Quality control checklist

  • Comments list
  • Sorting “comments”, type, author, date, page


File Attachment Tool                                                                               Week 3

— and looking at them/ opening them after

select multiple objects to copy and paste

combine objects

access hidden toolbars

find word count


Advanced Acrobatics                                                                              Week 4

Functions and tips for editorial pros using Acrobat Pro XI (or 9).

  • customize the toolbar
  • search several PDF files at once
  • compile files to combine reviewers’ markup
  • compare documents tool
  • apply a watermark
  • summarize comments in a PDF output (not hard copy)


Production-like skills:

  • add bookmarks to create document map (e-index)
  • add links, internal and external
  • copying and pasting PDF pages from one PDF to another
  • copying snippets/ snapshots & pasting them

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