Day 1 – “Twas the night before Christmas…”: ‘Read Aloud’ Word Documents

What is this?

Read Aloud is one of the Learning Tools in Word, which are designed to help with reading fluency and comprehension.

Why might this be useful?

You might use it to give your eyes a break from reading, or while you’re on the move, or it could be a useful tool for people wanting to improve their English language skills. With the roll-out of Blackboard Ally, documents can now be downloaded in different formats and one of these is an mp3 file (audio). Using the Read Aloud function in Word may give you an indication of how your document will sound before you upload it to your Blackboard module site.

How do I use it?

If you are using Office 2019, open your Word document, go to View > Learning Tools and click on Read Aloud. The words are highlighted as they are read out. You can start/stop, change the reading speed and there’s also a small choice of reading voices. Give it a go with the 12 days of Christmas lyrics.

(For Office 2016, follow the instructions on the Microsoft Community page about using the Speak feature; and for Office 365, open your Word file, click on View > Immersive Reader. Click on the play icon to stop/start, and click on the loudspeaker icon to the right to change the settings.)