Use the dictation scratchpad

Some programs might not automatically accept text dictation. You can use the dictation scratchpad to dictate text into these programs. When you use the dictation scratchpad, the text that you dictate appears in a separate window. The scratchpad works like a temporary document where you can use your voice, mouse, or keyboard. You can also use the scratchpad to make corrections using the Alternates panel or the Speech Dictionary. For more information about dictating text, see Dictate text using Speech Recognition.


  • Speech Recognition is available only in English, French, Spanish, German, Japanese, Simplified Chinese, and Traditional Chinese.

  1. Open the program that you want to dictate text into.

  2. Open Speech Recognition by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking All Programs, clicking Accessories, clicking Ease of Access, and then clicking Windows Speech Recognition.

  3. Say "start listening" or click the Microphone button to start the listening mode.

  4. Say "show Speech Options," say "Options," and then say "Enable dictation scratchpad."

  5. Dictate the text that you want. The scratchpad appears, allowing you to see and correct the text that you want to dictate. When you're ready to insert the text into the program, say "insert."


  • If you're using an input method editor (IME) to enter text, the scratchpad is not available.