Windows Speech Recognition

While Dragon's Naturally Speaking is considered the best program available, it costs money. Windows has built-in speech recognition that you can use to dictate to Microsoft Word. With a little training, it is pretty impressive. We recommend the addition of a USB headset with microphone. These can be purchased for under $50.00


1. Choose Start/Settings/Control Panel and select the Speech icon (in Classic View)

2. In the Speech Properties window, choose New... to start training the computer on your voice.

3. Follow the directions on the Voice Training screen:

4. Read the sample text to train the computer.

5. When done, open Microsoft Word.

6. Choose Tools/Speech

7. Click the Dictation button in the toolbar.

8. Start speaking! That's it!

9. Be sure to check the text for errors. Continued training will improve the accuracy.

10. You can take control of menus using the Voice Command button in the toolbar simply by speaking the names of the menu items.

11. While using Microsoft Word, the Speech Toolbar has additional features. If you want Word to read your text back to you, just click on the down arrow at the right end of the toolbar to select the Speak Text button to add it to the toolbar.

12. Select the text you want the computer to speak and click the button.