Speech recognition is not yet advanced enough to provide people with a reliable listening typewriter with which they could compose documents. The aim of this experiment was to determine if an imperfect listening typewriter would be useful for highly experienced dictators. Participants dictated either in isolated words or in continuous speech, and used a simulated listening typewriter which recognized a limited vocabulary as well as one which recognized an unlimited one. Results suggest that reducing the rate at which people dictate, either through limitations in vocabulary size or through speaking in isolated words, led to reductions in people's performance. For these first-time users, no version of,the listening typewriter was better than traditional dictating methods.