Reason #7 why we love Google Docs in the classroom: It’s easy to use.
We recently bought Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 Premium. It’s hard not to got sucked in by their marketing.
Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 claims on their box that you can just say words and watch them appearÂ “three times faster than typing — with up to 99% recognition accuracy right out of the box.”
- As a teacher, Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 could make you more efficient. For example, we type out a lot of student feedback and if we really could work three times faster, then it means that we could cut down the time it takes us to mark essays and assignments significantly.
- If you’re a student, chances are you don’t type very quickly. If you have a learning disability, you might even have difficulty getting your ideas down on paper. The idea that you can simply speak out your ideas and the computer will capture them and type them out for you could be very useful for some people.
- (Nuance does provide an academic discount on their Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 Premium to qualified students and teachers. Make sure you read these 10 things to know before you buy the Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 premium education version.)
But just how accurate is Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11? We’ve been using Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 every day for the past 17 days.
- How accurate is Dragon NaturallySpeaking after two weeks of work?
- How accurate is it when it comes out-of-the-box?
Before we bought Dragon 11, we did a fair bit of research online.Â (Originally we bought the student/teacher version of Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 premium. But, we returned that and eventually bought Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 premium wireless because it comes bundled with a Bluetooth headset.)
Google brings up a lots of sites repeating this idea that with Dragon NaturallySpeaking (DNS), you can get up to 99% accuracy.
Now that we have Dragon NaturallySpeaking, we’re curious to see how accurate it really is for the average user.
- Why people use the rainbow passage to test speech recognition software
- What we did to test the accuracy of Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11
- Rainbow Passage Sample used to test Dragon NaturallySpeaking
UPDATE Note: This post was originally published on October 27, 2010. I’ve updated it on June 15, 2018. Click here to jump to the original post.
A lot of time has passed since I first wrote this post, but the Education Student / Teacher discount is still out there. You can save $100 off the current premium version of Dragon dictation software.
QUICK SUMMARY: Here are some quick links to the Nuance official website (so you can skip my random thoughts:)
- Dragon NaturallySpeaking 13 Premium Student / Teacher (official site)
- Dragon Student Licensing / Education validation requirements (official site)
- Dragon NaturallySpeaking 13 Premium (digital download – official site)
I use Dragon Professional which is available in version 15. (The premium versions are currently only available at version 13.)
- Dragon Professional Individual 15 (official site)
What’s the Difference between Dragon NaturallySpeaking Home and Premium (and Student) Editions?
Read this for more info.
Dragon NaturallySpeaking Versions that I’ve bought over the years.
I’ve been using Dragon NaturallySpeaking speech recognition software since Oct 2010. (Here’s a post about me using Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 back in the day.)
Over the years, the software has changed. The initial setup out-of-the-box has gotten incredibly easy.
- Before you had to read a bunch of passages to train your voice.
- Now, you just have to read a few lines to check the quality of your audio.
- Then, you go right into a voice tutorial to learn some basic skills, and then you’re off and away dictating into your computer.
Generally speaking, I don’t think the accuracy of the program has changed very much. I can get anywhere from 95-98% of my words transcribed properly by the speech recognition software.
Here are my thoughts on the different upgrades over the years.
Dragon Professional Individual 15
- I upgraded to this in May 2017. I paid $149.99 for the upgrade.
- I haven’t used it much lately because life has been busy, but overall, I’m not seeing a big difference between this version and the previous one.
- The product SKU is K809A-G00-15.0
Dragon Professional Individual (Version 14)
- I got this in Feb 2016. I paid $99.99 for the upgrade. (There was a discount of $200.01 applied for the promotion.)
- (It’s nice how they put the version number in the Product SKU): K809A-G00-14.0
Dragon NaturallySpeaking 13 Premium
- I upgraded to this version in May 2015. I had to pay $159.99 for the electronic download. I live in Canada and no tax was added at the checkout.
- I think this was a 20% discount promotion that they were offering.
Dragon 12.5 is now available for download, and I just bought it.
- Dragon 11 was 97.6% accurate for me.
- Dragon 12 is supposed to be up to 20% more accurate out-of-the-box, but read this post.)
Save $100 by buying the Dragon 13 Premium Student / Teacher Version.
- If you are a student or teacher, you get Dragon 13 Premium for only $99.99 instead of the regular $199.99.
- Note, you have to validate your education status to prove you are a student / teacher.)
Are you a student or teacher?
Are you thinking about getting Dragon NaturallySpeaking? Did you know there’s a student/teacher version which is $100 cheaper than the regular premium edition?
Here are 10 things to know before you buy Dragon NaturallySpeaking Premium Student/Teacher:
We recently canceled our order for Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 Wireless Teacher and Student Edition.
Not because we don’t love Dragon 11 – we’re still cautiously optimistic and excited by the voice-recognition software. In fact, this post was written using Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 Premium Wireless. (Jump to the bottom to see the accuracy rate.)
No, we returned the Education Edition back to Nuance because we found a better deal at StaplesÂ in our hometown. When we wrote our initial review of Dragon 11, we were having some trouble with Nuance’s cancellation/return policy. We’re happy to report that we received a full refund from Nuance. Continue reading “Nuance (Dragon NaturallySpeaking) Gave Us a Full Refund”
We just got Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 Wireless Premium and we are cautiously optimistic. We’re trying to figure out whether speech recognition software can make us more efficient, as well as how good it would be in the classroom.
Right now, this post is being written using Dragon and Internet Explorer. (I did have to use some keyboard clicking and mouse highlighting when I was editing.)
I’m not sure if it’s easier to speak our ideas rather than typing this post, but that could be because we’re just starting out. Here are some of our first impressions. We’ll follow up with a second post in a month to see if our thoughts change after we become better acquainted with the program. Continue reading “Using Dragon NaturallySpeaking 11 in the Classroom”
Our school is fortunate enough to have access to interactive whiteboards (SMARTboards), SMART airliner tablets, and a class set of clickers.
If we were going to invest our own personal money into our classroom technology, we would definetely get a class set of clickers over the airliner tablet or interactive whiteboard. No contest. Here’s why.
- What are clickers?
- Examples of places using clickers
- Five ways to engage students using clickers in the classroom
- How to use clickers in your classroom
We’ve been teaching our speech unit to Grade 7 and 8 students for several years, but this is the first year we’ve really had an opportunity to integrate different types of technologies into our English lesson.
Let’s be honest. Most students hate doing speeches. They don’t like spending the time to write the speech, revise their work, or to present in front of their classmates who might bully them if they don’t pick a topic that’s popular, original, or cool.
Having said that, overall, students (including lower-end students and disengaged boys) were more interested Â in our unit because the technology hooked them in a meaningful way. (As opposed to technology for technology’s sake.)
Here’s what we did:
- Prewriting: Using a class blog / website to generate ideas
- Prewriting: Using Mind Web software to help students brainstorm ideas for their speech
- Writing the speech: Using Google Docs to allow student revising / editing and feedback
- Practicing the Speech: Watching Examples of Greatness
- Practicing the Speech:Â Online stopwatch
- Practicing the Speech: Video feedback
- Assessing the Speech: Peer feedback using clickers
We run several classroom blogs and professional sites, including this blog on using educational technology in the classroom. Mostly we use WordPress, but lately we’ve been experimenting with bulleting boards (phpBB) for our online literature circles.
You can only go so far with free accounts, whether they’re with Blogger, WordPress.com, Edublogs, or Wikispaces. Eventually, you want to be able to do more. That’s when we looked into setting up a self-hosted WordPress account and looked into finding a web host.
So, what changed?
- Domain Name Privacy Registration
- 1 and 1 Internet
- Bottom Line: Who do you use for your classroom blog or websites?
If you’ve spent any time on the internet, you’ve already been indoctrinated into the world of Making Money Online.Â Just do a search using one of the big 3 search engines (Google, Yahoo, and Microsoft), and you’ll see ads beside your results.
When we were growing up, we made money as teens by mowing the lawn, babysitting the neighbour’s kids, or having a paper route. As we got older, we started to get our first job: working atÂ summer camp,Â a fast food joint or the local supermarket. Finally, we went to college or university to earn a degree and get a “real” job.
So it can be hard for us to understand that kids want to (and can) make money online.
Here are two things to think about:
1. Make money online as a teacher to help offset the costs of your technology-integrated classroom.
2. Explore the topic of Making money online with your students (either as a media literacy unit or as an extra-curricular club.)
- Examples of Kids who Make Money Online
- Why talk about Making Money Online in the Classroom
- 1. The theme of Making Money Online provides an authentic learning opportunity in the classroom and can help address the gender gap.
- 2. Talking about how people make money online provides a framework to teach media literacy
- 3. A unit on Making Money Online allows us to apply critical thinking skills
- What would a unit on Making Money Online look like?
- Logistical things to consider with Google AdSense.
- The dangers of using Google Ads in the classroom
We’re just creating our new classroom website for the 2009-2010 year. We had it up and running in about 15 minutes by setting up WordPress 2.8.4Â (3 minutes to create the site; 12 minutes to cut and paste the content from our Meet the Teacher newsletter.)
- How to Make a Class Website
- Should I use Google Sites or WordPress for our Classroom Website / Blog?
- Why we still use BlueHost to run our WordPress powered Classroom Blog
- Why we still like WordPress for our Class Website / Student Blogs
- One Big Problem with WordPress 2.8
- One Big Problem with using a self-hosted WordPress account for your Classroom Website
- Bottom Line