[Athen] Cengage Learning

Teresa Haven Teresa.Haven at asu.edu
Thu Jun 11 07:32:46 PDT 2009

Hi, Susan. Believe it or not, except for the fact that they send
everything in single huge PDF files as you describe, Cengage is my
favorite major publisher to work with at this time. They generally get
me what I want in a timely manner, and if I remember right, don't they
give you the option of choosing preferred format at the end of their
request page? PDF is the default, but I seem to remember they also
offer Word and text. Most of the time I don't want Word extractions
from publishers because they are such a mess to clean up, especially for
books with complex layouts -- we spend more time cleaning up
publisher-supplied Word extractions than we would just chopping,
scanning, and editing books ourselves. You're right, in order to open
and break up the PDF files they send, you do have to have a machine
running Adobe Acrobat Pro with a decent amount of RAM, although I've
been successfully doing it on a 6-year-old desktop which isn't exactly
high-end. It would be nice if they would send the books as
chapters/sections as some other publishers do. However, since it isn't
an ideal world and I'm comparing the pros and cons of one publisher to
another, I'll take Cengage's timely delivery any day over the generally
slow delivery of McGraw Hill; getting a publisher file that I still have
to edit 4 months after I've requested it usually does me no good. As
you say, sometimes the best we can do is still to buy, chop, and scan; I
request publisher files but always assume that I'm going to have to go
the full hardcopy conversion route. Getting the publisher file then is
just a bonus on my day. :)


Teresa LW Haven, Ph.D.
Supervisor, Alternate Format Program
Disability Resource Center
Arizona State University


From: athen-bounces at athenpro.org [mailto:athen-bounces at athenpro.org] On
Behalf Of Kelmer, Susan M.
Sent: Thursday, June 11, 2009 6:31 AM
To: DSSHE-L at LISTSERV.BUFFALO.EDU; Access Technology Higher Education
Subject: [Athen] Cengage Learning

Does anyone have any better luck getting materials from Cengage than I
am? They always send us a web link to download/save their stuff, and it
is ALWAYS in one giant PDF that I can barely open, much less do anything
else with! The latest is a World Geography book, 744 pages, in one
freakishly HUGE file and the only thing I can do is export it and then
try to break out the chapters, then edit, then record the audio. So
far, my high-end computer is balking at doing this, it took more than 8
minutes for it to open the file in Adobe Professional to begin with. I
don't hold out much hope that it will actually be able to do the job in
the end, and machines don't get much faster than what I've got sitting
on my desk.

In these cases, it's quicker to buy, cut, and scan the book!

How on earth are we supposed to get through to these publishers, anyway?
I want a Word file. Or a Text file. Or an HTML file. ANYTHING but a

Susan Kelmer

Adaptive Technology Specialist/

Lab Coordinator, Campus Labs and Classrooms

St. Louis Community College - Meramec


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