Skip to Main Content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

ENGL 1101 & 1102 Textbook User Guide

User Guide for Perimeter College's Freshman Composition e-textbooks

Using the PDF e-text

If you've chosen the PDF version of the e-text, there are several ways to use it:

  • Preview mode allows you to use the e-text in iCollege. However, every time you want to use it, you will need to wait for it to download. You also can't take notes or highlight in Preview mode, so you'll probably want to choose another option.
  • PDF Viewers. Firefox, Chrome, Internet Explorer and other browsers usually have a default PDF Viewer that allows you to open the pdf e-text in the browser.  You will be able to print or save the document, but you will probably have more features, such as highlighting or notetaking, if you use a PDF Reader.
  • PDF Readers allow you to open the file you've downloaded onto your computer or mobile device. Depending on the functions of the PDF reader, you may be able to take notes or highlight the text.  There is a list of free PDF Readers on this page.
  • Binder is a program from Desire to learn that allows you to store the pdf e-text online. You can highlight and underline text.

Open and Download the PDF file: Preview Mode and PDF Viewers

  1. In your iCollege class, click on the PDF file.
    ENGL 1101 e-text files as they appear in iCollege
  2. The e-text will open in a preview.
    • It may take a while to load because it is a large file. (You do not have to wait until it loads fully to download it to your computer.)
    • You can view the e-text in this preview, but you cannot print it or make notes.

3. To download the text so you can save or print it, use the download icons below the preview window.  You can also send it to Binder (More about Binder in a minute.) 

PDF preview in iCollege
Preview in iCollege


4. When you download the file, the e-text will open in a PDF viewer or reader determined by your computer settings or browser (The image below shows the PDF viewer in Chrome.)

    • From here, you can save the file or print. 
    • You may wish to save the document to your desktop for convenient access.
    • Opening the saved file in a PDF reader or using Binder gives you better functionality than using the e-text in the preview in iCollege or the reader provided by your browser.  These options are described in the sections further down the page.

PDF viewer in Chrome browser (Your browser may vary.)
the e-text in the Chrome PDF viewer

Using the e-text in an PDF Reader

A PDF reader will gives you more functions than a PDF viewer. Depending on the PDF reader you choose, you may be able to:

  • highlight and underline text
  • add notes
  • convert to another file type
  • use hyperlinks in the text (For example, the page numbers in the Table of Contents)
  • search within the text (May have a search tool or need to use Ctrl+F)

IMPORTANT: After making notes or highlighting, save the file so you don't lose your notes!

PDF Readers

If you have Adobe Acrobat, you already have a great PDF reader!  If not, here are some others...


Free PDF Readers

These are not necessarily endorsed or supported by GPC. Many of these have paid versions with more features.

The example below shows the free version of Adobe Reader XI. Features include bookmarks, adjusting the size of the image, and creating notes and highlights.

Adobe XI Reader features

Adobe Reader XI features

Using the e-text in Binder

Binder is a program from Desire to Learn that allows you to store PDFs and other documents online.  The Binder PDF viewer allows you to highlight and underline text.

To use Binder:

  1. Create a Binder account using your GPC email and password.
  2. From the preview in iCollege, send your e-text (or other document) to Binder.
  3. Go to Binder and log in.
  4. From here, you can open your documents and highlight or underline text.  Changes are automatically saved and will be available across all your devices.

Binder featuresthe e-text in Binder

To highlight text in Binder, select the part of the text you want to highlight. When you release the mouse button, options to highlight or underline appear.  Text you highlight or underline will appear in the right column.