Roster Flash Cards

Flash cards are a great memory aid for learning the names of students in your classes.  This software application takes a Cal Poly Course Roster PDF and formats it for printing as double-sided flash cards: student photo on front and name on the back.

  1. sample flash cardsDownload the standalone Jar file (cross-platform).

  2. Login to the Cal Poly web portal, and under the "Academics" tab, Download "Enrolled Student Photos" for your class.  Save the PDF on your workstation. Typically it will be named something like: 2158-cpe123-01photos.pdf

  3. Assuming you have Java installed on your computer (version 6 or higher), launch the application from a terminal window with the command:
       java -jar RosterFlashCards-0.1.jar  filename
    substituting the filename of your course roster.

  4. The output file is a new PDF containing the flash card formatted photos and names.  This new file is created in the same directory where the application was launched and is named with "FlashCards" appended to the original filename.  E.g., myroster.pdf becomes myrosterFlashCards.pdf.

  5. Print the output file on a color printer, specifying double sided printing.

  6. Using scissors, cut along the border lines.

  7. Start memorizing!

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java -jar RosterFlashCards.jar OPTIONS... FILES...

Create formatted flash cards from FILES. 
FILES is one or more PDF Course rosters (with photos) obtained from the Cal Poly Portal.
Output is a PDF file with same name with 'FlashCards' appended.
E.g., myroster.pdf becomes myrosterFlashCards.pdf
None of the following options are needed - default settings will be adequate in most cases.


-a, --across=AMOUNT
number of cards ACROSS the page, i.e., number of columns. Default is 2.

-d, --down=AMOUNT
number of cards DOWN the page, i.e., number of rows. Default is 4.

-w, --width=INCHES
card width in inches. Default is 5.0.

-h, --height=INCHES
card height in inches. Default is 3.0.

-s, --size=[s|m|l]
desired image size. small, medium, or large. Default is medium.

-r, --rotate
rotate page 90 degrees. Default is not rotated.

-f, --fixed
use card dimensions specified by -w and -h options. Default is not fixed,
meaning page is filled with the number of cards specified by -a and -d
options (ignoring -w and -h).

-p, --physical
Align cards to physical page size, not just printable area.  Use this
option to reduce the number of paper cuts required because no margins
need to be trimmed. Default is use printable area.

-n, --noborder
Omit borders around cards.  Default is draw borders.

-i, --info
Show this informative message.

-m, --margins=LIST
Specify the printer's media margins, the distance outside the
printable area. LIST must be four comma separated whole numbers
(in millimeters) in this order: left, right, top, bottom.  Used in
conjunction with -p option. Defaults are 7,6,6,10.
MIT License.
 Copyright (c) 2015 John Dalbey.

The following examples illustrate the effect of different options:

--size=s --across=3 --fixed --across=1 --down=3 --rotate --fixed --across=2 --down=2
flash flash flash

 --physical --rotate --fixed --across=2 --down=2  --noborders --physical --rotate --fixed --across=2 --down=2
flash Flash