Talking Text – How to Make Your iPad Speak Selected Words & Phrases

A few days ago I led an introductory iPad workshop for teachers from a local school system. One of the dozens of topics we addressed was text editing. During my guided practice, I was showing them how to select a word and use the blue grab handles to extend that selection to adjacent words. For single words, they got the typical Copy – Select All – Define choices. When selecting more than one word, they got the usual Copy – Select All. However, in both cases I got the additional choice to speak the highlights. With just a few taps, soon everyone had the option for talking text.

Shows Speak selection

Here’s how you can add the ability to have your iPad speak selected words and phrases.

Go to Settings > General > Accessibility
Tap Speak Selection from the list at the top of the screen
Adjust the Speaking Rate (Choose a setting near the (s)lower end)

You’ll now get the option to have selected text spoken aloud in most any app that allows text editing.

Showing Speak selection

For more on text selection see this post.

About Andy Brovey

Dr. Andy Brovey, The Portable Prof, helps others make sense and make use of digital tools through his work, websites and social media. He has over 30 years experience in educational technology, including teaching, administration and professional development. In 2007, Apple Inc. recognized his work and named him an Apple Distinguished Educator. He started this iPad Academy website shortly after the first iPad went on sale to help others become more comfortable and competent with the iPad, in person and online. His latest venture is Teach About Tech, a resource marketplace for technology trainers.