How to Convert a Scanned PDF Document into a Text File

By Contributing Writer

It is possible to take a document, scan it, convert it to a PDF and then convert that PDF to a text file with Adobe Acrobat. Doing this can save time that might otherwise be spent retyping a document. The process is simple, provided a high quality scan can be made. It is also possible to use a third party application to convert the PDF directly to a Microsoft Word document.

Turning a scanned PDF into a Text File

Step 1

Scan the document. Save it as a PDF.

Step 2

Open the scanned document in Adobe Acrobat.

Step 3

Select "File>Export>Text>Text Plain."

Step 4

Name the document and click "Save."

Step 5

Open the saved file and review for conversion errors.

Step 6

Save the corrected document.

Converting a scanned PDF into a Word Document

Step 1

Scan the document. Save it as a PDF.

Step 2

Open an Internet browser. Go to the first link in the Resources section below.

Step 3

Select "Browse" and upload the scanned document.

Step 4

Choose to convert the document to Word (.doc) or RTF (Rich Text Format.) Rich Text Format is compatible with Word.

Step 5

Enter the email address to which the converted document will be mailed.

Step 6

Open the document once it has been sent and check for and correct any errors.

Step 7

Save the Word document.

References & Resources