Pressbooks is online software that enables instructors to design and format books. The Iowa State University Digital Press supports the publication of open textbooks through Pressbooks. Pressbooks is an easy-to-use web-based authoring tool based on WordPress that creates mobile-friendly web books with options to export in PDF and EPUB formats. For more information and to get started, please visit the Digital Press website.

  • A simple, familiar interface
  • Unlimited ability to edit, update, and (re)export books
  • Embed multimedia easily
  • Integrate interactive elements with H5P
  • Incorporate mathematical equations with MathJax and QuickLatex

Getting Started

Instructor Resources

Pressbooks with Your Canvas Course

Export from Pressbooks

The Common Cartridge with Web Links export produced by Pressbooks can be used to quickly import each chapter of a public book into a course in your Canvas course as an external link. To produce a Common Cartridge file for import into Canvas:

  1. Click ‘Export‘ in your book’s admin dashboard.
  2. Select Common Cartridge with Web Links from the Export Options panel
  3. Click the ‘Export Your Book‘ button and wait for the file to appear in your list of ‘latest exports’.
  4. Hover over the IMSCC file in the Latest Exports list and click ‘Download’

Import Into Pressbooks

  1. Go to your Canvas Course you wish to import content.
  2. In Course Navigation, click the Settings 
  3. Click the Import Course Content
  4. In the Content Type drop-down menu, select the Common Cartridge 1.x Package
  5. Click Choose File
  6. Find and click the Common Cartridge ZIP or IMSCC file you want to import. Then click the Open button.
  7. Once the import is complete, you can access your content in

Student Resources

Pressbooks with Your Canvas Course

Pressbooks content may be linked within Modules or added as an Assignment in your Canvas course. 


Pressbooks is available to ISU instructors through The Iowa State University Digital Press. Visit the Digital Press website for more information.


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