Multilingual Publication Support


Pressbooks has 3 different language settings that control different aspects of your book:

  1. Book language, which is part of your book’s metadata
  2. User interface language, which sets the language of your book’s admin interface
  3. Language script support, which adds support for non-Latin alphabets to be included in your book

Book Language

When you first create your book, you will need to set the language of your book. This language can be modified at any time after your book has been created, by going to the Book Info page. Your book language is set to English as a default.

Screen showing the location of book info on the left bar and the drop down info for changing the language
Changing book language

This setting also affects the display language of text that Pressbooks automatically generates for your book. Specifically, these terms will be modified and translated according to your chosen metadata language:

  • “Contents” on the Table of Contents
  • “Part” on Part opening pages
  • “Chapter” on chapter opening pages

By default, the setting also changes the user interface language of the book’s admin interface. To set a different language for your user interfaces, see the section below.

User Interface Language

By default, your book admin user interface language will be the same as the language you selected for your book.

However, you might find it easier to work in English. To change the user interface language:

  1. Click on your name in the top right corner of your screen to open your user profile.
  2. Under “Personal Options,” find the Language setting
  3. Select your language from the dropdown menu
  4. Click Update Profile to save your changes
Screen showing an author's profile setting and the location of the language selection
Selecting the language on your profile page

NOTE: This setting is personal to you. It will be applied for all the books you work on, but won’t affect anyone else working on the same book as you. Every user can set their own language as best suits them. Unfortunately the choices of language are very limited.

Language & Script Support

If your book includes text in a language that uses a non-Latin alphabet, Pressbooks allows you to embed additional fonts in your exported files to ensure it displays correctly.

To do this, go to your “Theme Options” page and select the required language(s) under the “Language & Script Support” option. Choose your language or script under “Language”.


Screen showing theme options and the ability to select non-roman language characters
How to select a thematic language

Currently, Pressbooks support is available for the following languages:

  • Ancient Greek
  • Arabic
  • Biblical Hebrew
  • Bengali
  • Canadian indigenous syllabics (for the Chipewyan, Inuktitut, Plains Cree, Cree, Moose Cree, Slave, Northern Cree, Naskapi, Swampy Cree, Southern East Cree, and Ojibwa languages)
  • Chinese (Simplified)
  • Chinese (Traditional)
  • Coptic
  • Devanagari (Hindi and Sanskrit)
  • Gujarati
  • Japanese
  • Kannada
  • Korean
  • Malayalam
  • Odia
  • Punjabi (Gurmukhi)
  • Syriac
  • Tamil
  • Telugu
  • Tibetan
  • Turkish


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University of Arkansas OER Style Guide Copyright © 2023 by Lora Lennertz is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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