Skip to Main Content

Online/Distance Learning Library Orientation: Downloading PDFs

This guide is intended for students enrolled in an online nursing program at PNW.

Portable Document Format (PDF)

Portable Document Format (PDF) is a file format used to save and present digital documents.  PDF files can be viewed on PC and Mac operating systems.

You can identify files saved as a PDF format with the ending/filename extension .pdf. You may also see the PDF icon next to the name.

The PDF icon may appear as one of the following or a variation of the following icons: 


The following offers information on saving a PDF file to a PC computer.


Step 1

Place mouse over the document until a blue or gray toolbar (varies by browser) appears at the top or bottom of document.




Step 2

Click on the floppy disk or download arrow from the toolbar that appears near the bottom of the document



A new window should appear where you can rename the file and move it to another folder.



The following offers one method of saving and opening PDF files on a Mac computer.

Step 1

Place your mouse over the document; a toolbar should appear towards the bottom of the document.
Clink on the download icon from the toolbar


Step 2

From the docked items on your desktop, select the Download folder 

Step 3

Click on your saved document directly or select the Open in Finder option (recommended)  

Once you have opened the folder containing the saved file, you can rename the file and move it to another folder.


1. Go to the CINAHL Complete database by clicking on the link above

2. Find an article with an available full text PDF

3. Save the PDF to a location of your choice

4. Find your file and open it from its saved location 


Your file should open as a PDF. If you are having problems, please contact PNW Information Services (IT) at 219-989-2888 or by e-mail at

Library Liaison for Nursing Students & Faculty

Profile Photo
Marcia Keith
Student Union & Library Building: Rm 203-B
Subjects: Health, Nursing

About the Library

The library offers a wide range of online resources, including databases with various journals from which to choose articles and research studies.

To access your Library resources, please visit the homepage

Please consult your Library Liaison directly for research assistance.

If your Librarian is unavailable, please contact the Library's Reference desk at (219) 989-2676 or click on the CHAT WITH A LIBRARIAN link below to submit a question or see answers to frequently asked questions.

Library Hours

Library staff members are available to assist you during library hours