Electronic note taking on a PDF workbook

2 Adobe Reader®

2.1 Using the App (iPhone, iPad or Android)

Using the Adobe Reader® mobile App

Once you have downloaded the App any PDF document you view should open in Adobe Reader automatically.The Adobe Reader toolbar will appear along the top of your document, looking like:

Adobe App Menu Bar

The icons allow you to:

  • Export from PDF (you have to pay for this service)
  • Editing Tools (see below for explanations)
  • Bookmark - pick to bookmark the current PDF page you are viewing
  • Search (allows you to enter a text string to search whole document for)
  • Settings (alter viewing mode, sharing, printing via the cloud)


Click on the Editing Tools icon and a new Toolbar will appear, as shown below.

Adobe Reader Editing Tools Toolbar

To use simply click on the appropriate tool and then select the text or place on page where you want to annotate. In the below example the following tools have been used:

  • Sticky note: Select the icon and then click on the page where you want the sticky note to be placed.A 'text box' opens for you to write your comment in. To display a comment when the sticky note is closed just double click on the yellow balloon, and the text box will reappear.
  • Highlighter: Click the icon and then pick and drag over the text on the page you want highlighted.
  • Freehand: The red tick has been added by clicking the Freehand icon and then drawing on the page. You can control the styling of the line work when you are drawing it from options that appear.
  • Type Text: The red text has been added to the page by selecting the Type Text icon and clicking on the page where you want to add text. Size and styling options appear when you are typing so you can control the text's format.

Example of annotated PDF

NOTE: The purple bar along the top of the PDF indicates that the current document has fields in it that you can fill out. If you see this read the section below.

PDF Forms and fields

Your lecturer may have set up fields for you to enter information into. These fields can be check-boxes, dates, or text areas where you can write one or multiple lines of text.

To use the fields make sure you keep the "Highlight Existing Fields" button depressed (as shown in the image above).

Scroll through the document looking for shaded areas. Below is an example of a text field waiting to be typed into.

Adobe example of a highlighted field.

To use simply click once in the shaded area. A text cursor will appear.

Type in your response.

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