Creating an Adobe Form

This page will describe the steps of creating an accessible PDF Form from an existing accessible Word document. Choose the tab that most closely matches where the form is in process.

  1. First prepare the Word document by making it accessible for saving as a PDF
  2. Next, prepare the Word document by indicating form fields with spaces rather than underscores
  3. Now export the Word document into PDF (be sure to follow the instructions, just doing a "Save as PDF" will not transfer the accessibility settings)
  1. Give the PDF a Title
  2. Click on the "Tools" tab in the top ribbon
  3. From the "Tools" menu click on PrepareForm
  4. In the "Prepare Form" window, the document you are currently in should be selected/highlighted, select "Start".
    1. The system may ask you to save the document again and then verify you want to save over the original (as you will be saving a form document over a non-form document).
  5. Once processed the Form will have been created and saved to the place you designated
  6. You will see the form fields in the document labeled "Text1", "Text2", "Text3", etc.
  7. In the right-hand menu you will see a list of the fields, per page, with the same corresponding labels.

Check the field tab order:

  1. While in "Prepare Form" edit mode, click on the top field in the right-hand menu (not in the document).
  2. Using the down arrow on your keyboard, click through the fields to make sure the fields are being highlighted down the document in the appropriate order that they should be read. Warning: Be extra watchful for checkmark boxes and radial button groups
  3. To re-arrange the field order, in the right-hand menu, click on a field then drag and drop to achieve the appropriate tab order

Autotag the document:

  1. Click on the "Tools" tab in the top ribbon
  2. From the "Tools" menu click on AccesibilityIcon
  3. In the right-hand "Accessibility" menu click on "Autotag Document"

Enter Names and ToolTips

  1. While in the "Prepare Form" edit mode, right-click on each field (either from the document or the right-hand menu)
  2. Choose "Properties" and stay in the "General" tab of the Text Field Properties window
  3. Enter a proper label for the field under "Name:" (optional)
  4. Enter an easy-to-understand prompt for the field under "Tooltip:", for example "Enter your First Name" (required)

Check Accessibility

  1. Be sure the document is saved with all the edits you have made
  2. Click on the "Tools" tab in the top ribbon
  3. From the "Tools" menu click onAccesibilityIcon
  4. In the right-hand "Accessibility" menu click on "Full Check"
  5. Follow the PDF Remediation instructions to resolve errors

Modifying a PDF Form

At any time when working on a PDF form, you can select the "Preview" button on the top right to view the form not in "edit" mode. Selecting the "Edit" button on the top right while in Preview will bring you back into Edit mode.

This may be needed when the program created a field where there wasn't a need, or you've just decided to change how the form works. 

  1. While in the "Prepare Form" edit mode, select the field in the right-hand menu you want to delete
  2. You can now press the "delete" button on your keyboard, or right-click and select "delete"

Text fields, check mark boxes, radial buttons, electronic signature field, etc. can all be added to the Form.

In the Prepare Form view (edit mode), there is an "Adding a Field" ribbon along the top of the window:

Prepare Form Adding a field ribbon

  1. Cursor: to bring back the cursor from when you had clicked on a field select Cursor
  2. Text box text box
  3. Checkmark box: Responder chooses one or more selections. Modify the box styles in the Check Box Properties available in the right-click menu. checkmark
  4. Radial button: Limited to one response. Modify the button styles in the Radial Button Properties available in the right-click menu.radialbutton
  5. List box that scrolls through responses. Limited to one response. listbox
  6. Drop down list. Limited to one response. dropdownlist
  7. Execute an action button, such as "print" or "clear formactioncutton
  8. Signature Box: In the Tooltip tab, enter whose signature it should be. In the Signed tab, choose what action should take place after the document has been signed. For example, locking the document once it has been signed or making it Read Only.  signaturebutton
  9. Barcode field: Text entered into this field prints out as a barcode. barcode
  10. Keep tool selected: Create multiples of the same field by selecting the icon then choosing the type of field. Then click in the document multiple times to add that field type to the document keepoff
  11. Field type help helpbutton

There are many edit options for fields. Right-click on the field in the document or right-hand menu and select Properties. Each type of field has its own tab menu selection.

Text Field Properties window:

  • General tab: Enter the Name and/or Tooltip for the field and choose the field's visibility and requirements.
  • Appearance: Set the field's Borders and Colors as well as the text size, color and font.
  • Position: Set the precise settings of the field size and placement. This can also be done when not in properties by just dragging and dropping as you would an image; however, it will not be precise.
  • Options: Set alignment, default menu, spell checking, scrolling, allowing rich text formatting, etc.
  • Actions: Set actions associated with the text box
  • Format: Format the text as a date, time, currency, percentage, etc.
  • Validate: Require the entry to be validated and give it the rules or validation script.
  • Calculate: Determine the value in this field by calculating values of other text boxes

Updated: 10/20/2022 10:00AM