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Creating Forms with Adobe Acrobat

One of the more powerful aspects of Adobe Acrobat Pro is the ability to create and edit forms. Using forms is an easy way to collect data from people electronically, making it an excellent tool for business, corporate and educational environments. Acrobat takes your pre-existing documents and automatically recognizes and converts static fields to fallible ones with a form wizard.

Creating Digital Forms

To begin, create your document in a separate application, such as Microsoft Word. Then open Acrobat.

1. When Acrobat opens, you'll see the starting dialog box. On the right side, select 'Create PDF'. (If the file you wish to use for a form is already a PDF, select Open instead.)

Assuming you are starting from a document not currently in PDF format, use the following dialog box to select the file.

It will take a minute or two for Adobe to convert your document. When it's ready and loaded up, open the Tools pane on the right side and click on Forms.

2. In the forms menu, select Create.

3. You will be asked to choose either a PDF form or an Online Form. Select PDF form and click Next.
Locate the document to convert - this will generally be the file you already have open, but you do have the option to choose a different file if you wish.

At this point, Acrobat will search your document for available fields. It will automatically populate them wherever the form create wizard recognizes fields, but you will be able to edit, add, and remove fields as you wish. When it's done, you will see this message.

And your document will look something like this example:
4.Right click on any field to see further editing options.

If Acrobat's auto-form feature missed any fields, or if you prefer to enter them all manually, you can also open the menu under Tasks to Add New Field (you choice of text field, check box, etc.). Select the one you want, then use your mouse to draw the field onto the document.

5. When you're done editing the form fields, click Close Form Editing under Tasks.

Your form will look something like this when complete:

If you want to change anything about it, simply re-open the Forms pane and select Edit to make your adjustments.

When you save the form, your form fields will be preserved. You can then send it to any number of recipients, and they can fill it out and return it digitally.