Speech Recognition Software, or SRS, have proven to benefit the lives of those with low typing or writing skills, including many dyslexics. Beyond its ability to navigate around a user’s computer without the need of the keyboard, this software is also useful because its speech-to-text dictation abilities can help a user type using just their voice-- no typing required. Most SRS programs require some voice training in order to familiarize the software and the user’s voice with each other. There are many SRS options available, with a varying number of features- from simple computer navigation commands to full speech-to-text dictation ability. Advanced SRS products’ speech-to-text dictation can be copied down in a variety of applications, including Microsoft Word, Excel, and multiple internet browsers. Users should be aware though, that most SRS products have around 96% dictation accuracy, so one can expect a mistake every twenty or so words. Some advanced SRS products have dictation playback abilities though, so the user can playback what the speech-to-text software had typed.

PC operating systems after Windows Vista have some available form of SRS, but the most common SRS available for purchase for PCs is Dragon NaturallySpeaking, whose dictation speed ability is up to three times the normal typing speed. For Apple computers, Dragon Dictate is an available software for advanced speech-to-text dictation. Newer iPad and iPhone models have the navigation aid of Siri, which doesn’t require any voice training.

To read more about Speech Recognition Software options, visit The British Dyslexia Association’s website.