FIX: Oops there was a problem with dictation in Microsoft Office

Aleksandar Ognjanovic
by Aleksandar Ognjanovic
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Using speech instead of typing has more than one advantage. Lots of users strongly prefer dictation and, even though it’s still unbrushed feature, it’s getting better with some help from AI technology. Let’s take Microsoft Office as an example. Once you get used to, it’s much easier to dictate your text to Word than to write it down for some users.

Sadly, some users run into issues with dictation as the “Oops, there was a problem with dictation” suddenly appeared. There are various reasons for this occurrence and we made sure to try and fix it in the steps below.

How to fix dictation issues in Office applications

  1. Run the Speech troubleshooter
  2. Inspect mic drivers
  3. Repair Office installation
  4. Reinstall Office

Solution 1 – Run the Speech troubleshooter

Let’s start by eliminating your mic as a possible instigator. The first step you can try is using the built-in Speech troubleshooter. This troubleshooter should run a series of tests in order to find out whether your mic is properly configured or not.

It might not help you overcome the issue if drivers are at stake. That requires a manual approach.

Here’s how to run Speech troubleshooter in Windows 10:

  1. Press Windows key + I to open Settings.
  2. Choose Update & Security.
  3. Select Troubleshoot from the left pane.
  4. Expand the Speech troubleshooter and click Run the troubleshooter.speech troubleshooter

— RELATED: 5 best dictation recorder software for Windows PCs

Solution 2 – Inspect mic drivers and permissions

The second important thing we’ll need to inspect before moving to Office-related troubleshooting is the mic driver. Most recording devices will work immediately as Windows Update will deal with drivers.

However, that’s not always the case so you’ll need to install them manually. For starters, let’s reinstall generic drivers and move from there:

  1. Right-click Start and open Device manager.
  2. Expand the Audio Inputs and Outputs section.device manager audio inputs and outputs
  3. Right-click on your mic (or mics if you see multiple devices) and choose Uninstall device.
  4. Reboot your PC and get back to Device Manager.
  5. Drivers should update automatically but you can always do it manually by right-clicking on the mic in the aforementioned section and installing the drivers.

Windows Update also tends to breaks drivers, so rolling back is not exactly a bad idea. On the other hand, the best way to make sure is acquiring drivers from the OEM’s support website.

Once we’ve dealt with drivers, let’s check permissions. Make sure that Office has permission to access your mic. You can do so by following these instructions:

  1. Press Windows key + I to open the Settings app.
  2. Choose Privacy.
  3. Select Microphone from the left pane.
  4. Under the “Choose which apps can access your microphone“, toggle on the Office.

Solution 3 – Repair Office installation

If the audio recording device isn’t an actual problem, we can move to Office troubleshooting. The best way to resolve all and every Office issues is by repairing the installation. This is a common solution and it won’t take too much of your precious time. As many other cases showed, installation of 365 Office and its predecessors tend to go corrupt.

That’s why we suggest navigating to Control Panel and repairing the installation. Here’s how to do it:

  1. In the Windows Search bar, type Control and open Control Panel.
  2. Choose Uninstall a program.
  3. Right-click on the Office and click Repair.

— RELATED: 4 best transcription software for PC

Solution 4 – Reinstall Office

Finally, if none of the previous steps helped you address the problem, we suggest performing a clean reinstallation. You can find the setup on the official Office website and download it rather simply.

But, beforehand, let’s uninstall Office from your PC by following steps from the previous solution. Just, instead Repair, choose Uninstall from the contextual menu.

After that, just run the installer and sign in with your credentials. After that, you should be able to use dictation in Office programs without any further issues. On the other hand, if you’re still unable to do so, consider contacting the official support and stating your issue.

With that said, we can conclude this article. Just in case you have any alternative solutions or possibly a question or two, don’t forget to post them in the comments section below. We’ll be glad to hear from you.