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Adobe Acrobat Reader

Available from the iTunes App store for free


Adobe Acrobat Reader is free and simple to use, but is quite basic compared to ClaroPDF and PDF Expert. You can now at least use the ipad Speak Selection to read the digital question paper, which was previously not the case. You can open files from the iPad, OneDrive and Google Drive, type and dictate answer, drawn and annotate, and save and print.

1. Opening papers

Adobe Acrobat Reader can open papers directly from OneDrive, iCloud, Google Drive or from other apps on the iPad.

2. Viewing the paper

Pinch to zoom in or out. Double tap to swap between seeing the whole page and page width view. The PDF papers are not reflowed when you zoom in and so if you need a very large font, you will probably have to scroll the paper around to read it.

Tap the Page button at top right to choose Continous or Single Page view. There is a Reading Mode which reflows the page to fit the screen. This may be useful for candidates with visual impairment who require high levels of zoom because the text reflows to fit the width of the screen. However, you can't use the answer boxes and pages with more complex layouts may not be rendered very well.  

You can choose between black-on-white or white-on-black (night mode).

Viewing several PDFs at the same time in Adobe Acrobat Reader is not possible.

3. Navigate around the paper

  • Turn pages: tap or flick at the left or right edge of the screen.
  • Table of contents: tap the Ribbon button at the top right to view the index of questions.
  • Go to a specific page: tap the page number at the bottom then type the page you want.
  • Search: tap the magnifying glass at top right.
  • Word definitions: select and word and choose Define to read a definition. Note that definitions and dictionaries are not permitted in examinations and so the dictionaries should be should be deleted. To do this, open a definition then tap Manage in the bottom left. Swipe left to delete the dictionaries. They can be downloaded again, but not if the iPad isn't connected to the internet - which it should not be, in the examination.

4. Reading with text-to-speech

Turn on the iPad Speak Selection, select text and choose Speak.

5. Typing into answer boxes

Tap on an answer box, and type the answer. The iPad Prediction and other writing supports can be used, as can Siri and Voice Control dictation. 'Speak Selection' can read back your answer. Tick boxes are selected by tapping.

6. Drawing, comments and annotation tools

Adobe Reader has a limited set of commenting tools: you can highlight, underline and strikethrough text, add a comment note and draw freehand.