IDEA Team Q&A: Voice to Text Apps


Here's a great question we had come in today from an SSW faculty member, which may benefit others in the SSW teaching and learning community:

"Do you know any good voice to text apps, or software for iPads or Macs or iPhones that are out there? My daughter is not very good at writing and much better at verbally sharing her thoughts so I wondered if this would be a way that she could write papers as she goes into college."

Julie's answer:

Since she has similar challenges as I - I highly recommend Ghotit. It is expensive, but it is a really good tool for people who struggle with writing. It states it is geared for people with dyslexia, but it really assists with grammar and verb pretense issues. I would recommend Office 365, Mendeley for citing and Bibliography for papers. Siri has gotten significantly better in iOS 10, so speaking to text is also helpful.

Take care - Julie

Hayley's answer: Another great tool to use is Dragon Dictate. It can be a bit of an expense, but it is worth the hassle. Dragon Dictate lets

you talk in a normal tone of voice at a regular speed.

Clark's answer:

First you should know that on iOS devices (iPhone, iPad), in the keyboard when you go to type something, there is a little microphone icon to the left of the space bar. It is not only in the Messages app, but in mostly any other apps, including Google Docs, etc. It’s not perfect, but very good for voice to text, and I use it all the time when I want to send quick messages but don’t want to type. Even if (or maybe especially if) I have something long to say, it makes it a lot easier to just say it, and then go back and correct the errors. (Tip: speak punctuation. So you would say “question mark” at the end of a question…)

As Julie mentioned, Siri has gotten a lot better, too, and is also available on Mac laptops with the recent OS upgrades.

Also, in the laptop side, there is a full featured dictation function in the Keyboard system preference. Once downloaded and turned on, you can set it up so that a simple keyboard command will bring up the dictation window.

Also, as of about a year ago, Google Docs has built in voice to text functionality under the Tools menu > Voice typing.

My 9 year old uses Google Docs all the time to type in his assignments and homework. It’s really handy for keeping it all in 1 place and in the cloud, accessible from any computer or device. So he can start something on my wife’s computer, continue on his ipad, or on my phone, etc etc… He hasn’t really used speech to text (and it probably wouldn’t work extremely well for him as he has an impediment) but the function is there.

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