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CA (168,503)
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Ted Petit (185)
Chapter 8

Chapter 8 - Hearing and Language Processing

13 Pages
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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYB65H3
Professor
Ted Petit

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Chapter 8: Hearing and Language Processing
Module 8.1 The Auditory System
The Properties of Sound
Frequency: rate of vibration number of wave cycles completed per unit of time.
Unit for frequency: Hertz (Hz cycles per second)
Human ear can only perceive vibrations between 20 and 20, 000 Hz
Humans are sensitive to sounds between 1000 and 4000 Hz
Sounds of different frequencies have different pitches higher the frequency,
higher perceived pitch
Property of sound is loudness- the amplitude of the sound wave
Sound amplitude measured in decibels (dB)
Conversational speech 40-60dB
Sounds varies in complexity, which perceived as the sounds timbre (example of
the application of timbre is knowing how to differentiate between violins and
trumpets)
In addition to the intended frequency (fundamental frequency), instruments
produce overtones which are at frequencies higher than the fundamental frequency.
Overtones vary in their intensities.
Complicated sounds can also be broken down into simple component waves in a
mathematical process called Fourier analysis. This type of analysis are used to
compress complex sounds on computers (MP3 format)
Prosody: ones tone of voice eg. When you are asking a question, the pitch of the
speaker rises.
The Ear
Sound waves enter the outer ear, passing the pinna through the hole (called the
auditory meatus) leading to the ear canal that amplifies the vibrations and channels
them onto the eardrum ( tympanic membrane)
www.notesolution.com
The membrane vibrates and passes the vibration along three bones: the malleus
(hammer), incus (anvil) and stapes (stirrup). These bones are called the ossicles.
Each bone further amplifies the vibration, transmitting the vibration through the
oval window
The membrane covering the oval window transmits the vibrations into the cochlea
through the cochlear fluid
The vibrations of the fluid cause a bending of both the basilar membrane and the
tectorial membrane which then creates neural activity in the hair cells
The hair cells are receptor cells of the auditory system located in the cochlea
Outer ear: comprises of the pinna and external ear canal. It serves to catch and
amplify sound waves
Middle ear: chamber between tympanic membrane and the oval window. Sounds
are transduced from air pressure vibrations to mechanical energy and then
amplified along the ossicles to the oval window
Inner ear: mechanical energy is converted to neural activity.
The outer hair cells help to tune the cochlea through contraction and relaxation
and the Inner hair cells, which are the receptors cells, have filaments at their tips
called cilia.
The cilia are arranged in order of height
When cilia move toward the direction containing the tallest cilium, fibres within the
cilia are stretched, resulting in increased firing in the axons on the cochlear nerve
If the cilia are forced in the opposite direction, towards the shortest cilium, firing the
cochlear nerve falls below the normal (resting) rate
The hair cells, the, their cilia, and the cells that support them are referred to as the
organ of Corti. This is located in the cochlear duct.
The hair cells and their cilia are located along the basilar membrane
There is a second membrane that runs parallel to the basilar membrane called the
tectorial membrane
www.notesolution.com
The part of the basilar membrane closest to the oval window is quite stiff and the
receptors here are exposed to higher frequencies
Nearer to the apex, the basilar membrane is more flexible and the receptors that
are located here are exposed to vibrations of lower frequencies
The frequency-specific sensory organization is referred to as tonotopic
The auditory cortex is inflexible mechanical system for detecting changes in air
pressure
Auditory Pathways
Axons from the cochlea nerve form a branch of the eighth cranial nerve
(vestibulocochlear nerve) and they synapse on the ipsilateral cochlear nuclei
Most projections lead to the ipsilateral or contralateral superior olives but some lead
directly to the inferior colliculus of the midbrain
From the inferior colliculus, some projections cross to the contralateral side (which
eventually reach to the geniculate nucleus and then the primary auditory cortex),
others project directly to the medial geniculate nucleus of the thalamus and then to
the primary auditory cortex (also referred to as Heschls gyrus or BA41)
Auditory Cortex
The neurons within the primary auditory cortex are specialized to respond to certain
frequencies of sound
Neurons within the auditory cortex are arranged in columns and the columns in
more anterior regions of the cortex respond maximally to higher frequencies
whereas neurons in posterior regions respond to more lower frequencies
The morphology of the primary auditory cortex differs between the right and left
hemisphere
Most right handers have a right Heschl’s gyrus that is larger than the left
Module 8.2 Language Systems in the Brain
Models of Spoken Language
Auditory language: language that is spoken and heard
www.notesolution.com

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Description
Chapter 8: Hearing and Language Processing Module 8.1 The Auditory System The Properties of Sound Frequency: rate of vibration number of wave cycles completed per unit of time. Unit for frequency: Hertz (Hz cycles per second) Human ear can only perceive vibrations between 20 and 20, 000 Hz Humans are sensitive to sounds between 1000 and 4000 Hz Sounds of different frequencies have different pitches higher the frequency, higher perceived pitch Property of sound is loudness- the amplitude of the sound wave Sound amplitude measured in decibels (dB) Conversational speech 40-60dB Sounds varies in complexity, which perceived as the sounds timbre (example of the application of timbre is knowing how to differentiate between violins and trumpets) In addition to the intended frequency (fundamental frequency), instruments produce overtones which are at frequencies higher than the fundamental frequency. Overtones vary in their intensities. Complicated sounds can also be broken down into simple component waves in a mathematical process called Fourier analysis. This type of analysis are used to compress complex sounds on computers (MP3 format) Prosody: ones tone of voice eg. When you are asking a question, the pitch of the speaker rises. The Ear Sound waves enter the outer ear, passing the pinna through the hole (called the auditory meatus) leading to the ear canal that amplifies the vibrations and channels them onto the eardrum ( tympanic membrane) www.notesolution.com The membrane vibrates and passes the vibration along three bones: the malleus (hammer), incus (anvil) and stapes (stirrup). These bones are called the ossicles. Each bone further amplifies the vibration, transmitting the vibration through the oval window The membrane covering the oval window transmits the vibrations into the cochlea through the cochlear fluid The vibrations of the fluid cause a bending of both the basilar membrane and the tectorial membrane which then creates neural activity in the hair cells The hair cells are receptor cells of the auditory system located in the cochlea Outer ear: comprises of the pinna and external ear canal. It serves to catch and amplify sound waves Middle ear: chamber between tympanic membrane and the oval window. Sounds are transduced from air pressure vibrations to mechanical energy and then amplified along the ossicles to the oval window Inner ear: mechanical energy is converted to neural activity. The outer hair cells help to tune the cochlea through contraction and relaxation and the Inner hair cells, which are the receptors cells, have filaments at their tips called cilia. The cilia are arranged in order of height When cilia move toward the direction containing the tallest cilium, fibres within the cilia are stretched, resulting in increased firing in the axons on the cochlear nerve If the cilia are forced in the opposite direction, towards the shortest cilium, firing the cochlear nerve falls below the normal (resting) rate The hair cells, the, their cilia, and the cells that support them are referred to as the organ of Corti. This is located in the cochlear duct. The hair cells and their cilia are located along the basilar membrane There is a second membrane that runs parallel to the basilar membrane called the tectorial membrane www.notesolution.com
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