tudies of tactile enhancement effects on auditory speech perception [Reed et al., JSHR, 1978, 1982, 1989] have traditionally used experienced, pre‐trained subjects. These studies have left unanswered the basic questions of whether tactile enhancement of speech is a basic component of human speech perception or a learned association [Fowler, JPhon, 1986; Diehl and Kluender, Ecol. Psych., 1989], and which aspects of the signal are enhanced through this modality. The present study focuses exclusively on tactile enhancement effects available to naive speakers. In a speech‐masked environment, naive subjects were tasked with identifying consonants using the Tadoma method. Half of the stimuli were presented with tactile input, and half without. The results show that all subjects gained considerably from tactile information, although which part of the tactile signal was most helpful varied by subject. The features that contributed most to consonant identification were aspiration and voicing.