Electronic Theses & Dissertations (ETD)

Introduction - Converting Your Thesis to PDF Format

What is PDF?

PDF stands for Portable Document Format. Adobe Systems developed the PDF standard and provides the premiere package for creating and manipulating PDF files, Adobe Acrobat.

Why PDF?

The process of converting to PDF takes instructions that would ordinarily be sent to a specific printer (see "What is Postscript?" below) and prepares them to be viewed or printed on any computer with the free Acrobat Reader installed. The latest version of Acrobat Reader can be downloaded from:


What is Postscript?

Postscript is a standard language developed by Adobe Systems, which is used to send instructions to postscript compatible printers. These instructions describe the contents of all text and graphics to be printed, and where on the page each piece of content is to be printed. Ordinarily, these instructions are transferred to a Postscript printer, which interprets them, creates a printed copy based on the instructions, and then discards the instructions.

On Campus Access

The U of S Learning Commons provides students with access to work stations with current versions of Adobe Acrobat that can be used for exporting your word processing documents to PDF format. There are on-site IT Help Desks in the Main (Murray) Library and Health Sciences Library Learning Commons locations if assistance is required.

To purchase your own copy of Adobe Acrobat, see the information below.

There is an Adobe licensing program offered by the Campus Computer
Store. Features inlcude:

  • reduced pricing
  • minimum order reduced from 10 to 1
  • deploy your license the same day it is purchased
  • borrow CD's from the CCS to further reduce costs
  • inexpensive maintenance(upgrade) options
Please visit the Campus Computer Store Adobe licensing page at:


adobe acrobat
Adobe Acrobat may also be purchased on their website at www.adobe.com/products/acrobat/main.html