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  • Adding PDF Metadata
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PDF Properties modified to include proper metadata makes the PDF more accessible to screen readers and creates structured meta-tags for search engine indexing.

You will start off with a PDF that has not had any metadata enhancement (1) and finish with an enhanced record (2)

(1.) Before metadata added:

(2.) After metadata added:

Step-by-step guide

** starred items are required for WCAG 2.0 accessibility compliance **

  1. Add bookmarks if there are major sections/chapters and document is more than 2 pages. **
    In most cases you can flip to the page, select the heading text (“Chapter 1. Introduction”) as if you are going to copy the text and click [CTRL+B] to create the bookmark. Drag and drop the bookmark if it needs to be a subcategory.
      • Front Matter => Front Cover, Tech.Rpt.Doc.Pg., Title Page, Copyright Page, Acknowledgments, Disclaimer
      • Table of Contents => +List of Figures, List of Tables
      • Chapters
      • Appendices
      • References
      • Back Cover
  2. View the PDF and open to "PDF Properties" (File>Properties…) and add the following metadata:
    1. Description TAB:
      1. Title**The title as given on the title page
      2. Author**: rule of 3. Only need first author if there are 3 or more authors. Separate each name by a comma (do not use "and" between different names).
      3. Subject*: the Study Number (e.g., TxDOT Research Project 0-6572).
      4. Keywords: from the Keyword box on the Technical Report Documentation Page. Use commas.
    2. Initial view TAB:
      1. Navigation: "Bookmarks Panel and Page" (only if bookmarks were added, Just "Page" for PSRs and other items <5 pages)
      2. Page layout: Single page. (or single page continuous)
      3. Magnification: Fit page.
      4. Window Options:
            • Resize Window to Initial Page.
            • Show: Document Title.  ** 
    3. Custom TAB (In this tab, you have to specify the name of the field in one box and the field value in the other box):
      1. (value= yyyy-mm-dd)
      2.  (if specified as “published on the report or publication date is known via another source. Value=yyyy-mm-dd)
      3. dc.contributor.sponsor (value for CTR usually = Texas Department of Transportation)
      4. dc.contributor.editor  (if known)
      5. dc.identifier.other
        1. value = the report number listed in Box 1 of the technical report documentation page. Products and PSRs can have a derived identifier
        2. Example value = TxDOT PSR 0-7015-S
        3. Example value = FHWA/TX-22/0-7015-1
      6. dc.publisher (value for CTR usually = Center for Transportation Research-UT Austin)
    4. Advanced TAB: Language=English **
  3. Edit the document page numbers so they match the printed document and Table of Contents. **
    1. Open the Thumbnails panel.
    2. Select the pages that need to be adjusted and are part of the same series.
    3. Right click on a selected thumbnail and choose "Page Labels..."
    4. Select the page numbering type and page range.
    5. Specify the number that the first page in you selection should be.
    6. If the number has a prefix, add that field (e.g., A- if all Appendix A page numbers are preceded with "A-").
  4. Save.


There are additional accessibility items that you should check before posting PDFs online or submitting them for review. Please be aware of federal, state, university, and research sponsor rules and regulations regarding accessibility requirements.