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"Dictée" redirects here. For the book by Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, see Dictee.

Dictation is the transcription of spoken text: one person who is "dictating" speaks and another who is "taking dictation" writes down the words as they are spoken.

La dictée

For speakers of French, la dictée is a school exercise that aims at testing the mastery of orthography and grammar. Since many features of French grammar are distinguished in writing but not in speech, this can be a challenging task.

Certain dictées became famous for their difficulty or their interest, like those of Prosper Mérimée and Bernard Pivot. In several countries of the world (including Switzerlandmarker, Francemarker, Belgiummarker, and Canadamarker), the dictations are the subject of structured championships, similar to English spelling bees.


In South Koreamarker, badasseugi (Hangul: 받아쓰기) is a school exercise for children in the lower grades of elementary school. The Korean language is written using Hangul, which is basically a phonemic alphabet; however, Hangul writing is also morphophonemic, so morphological knowledge (in addition to familiarity with Hangul) is necessary for correct dictation. Also, phonological rules such as assimilation, palatalization, and deletion can cause pronunciation to be different from what the written form may suggest. Badasseugi may take form of a word, a phrase, or a sentence, and is similar to spelling tests.

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