Measures of sensory acuity are obtained for varied reasons. For instance, an investigator may wish to know the effects of a drug, or a lesion, on the capacity of an animal to see, hear, or feel stimulation to which it is normally sensitive. More specifically, it is desirable to accurately assess the degree of sensory impairment resulting from some experimental treatment. Depending on the accuracy desired, the experimenter may choose an appropriate measurement technique from among a variety of procedures. No matter which technique is selected, however, the animal is always required to indicate it has detected a stimulus input by responding in some distinctive manner. Typically a cat may learn to move from one end of a box to the other when it hears a tone. Since past experience in the experimental chamber has shown the cat that failure to move during tone presentation resulted in painful electric shock, the cat usually learns to avoid shock by quickly moving across the box. Movement across the box during tone presentation is thus taken to indicate hearing. The tone may then be made progressively weaker until a signal level is reached to which the cat cannot respond, i.e., its threshold of hearing has been reached.


Sound Pressure Level Sound Field Test Cage Cochlear Microphonic Tone Onset 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. Adler, H. E., and J. I. Dalland. 1959. Spectral thresholds in the starling (Sturnus vulgaris). J. Comp. Physiol. Psychol., 52:438–445.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. Blough, D. S. 1956. Dark adaptation in the pigeon. J. Comp. Physiol. Psychol., 49:425–430.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Blough, D. S. 1966. The study of animal sensory processes by operant methods. In Honig, W. K., ed. Operant Behavior: Areas of Research and Application, New York, Appleton-Century-Crofts, pp. 345–379.Google Scholar
  4. Clack, T. D., and P. N. Herman. 1963. A single-lever psychophysical adjustment procedure for measuring auditory thresholds in the monkey. J. Aud. Res., 3:175–183.Google Scholar
  5. Dalland, J. I. 1965a. Auditory thresholds in the bat: A behavioral technique. J. Aud. Res., 5:95–108.Google Scholar
  6. Dalland, J. I. 1965b. Hearing sensitivity in bats. Science, 150:1185–1186.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Dalland, J. I. J. A. Vernon, and E. A. Peterson. 1967. Hearing and cochlear microphonic potentials in the bat Eptesicus fuscus J. Neurophysiol., 30:697–709.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  8. Dijkgraaf, S. 1946. Die Sinneswelt der Fledermäuse. Experientia, 2:438–448.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Dijkgraaf, S. 1960. Spallanzani’s unpublished experiments of the sensory basis of object perception in bats. Isis, 51, part 1, 9–20.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Elliott, D. N. 1967. Effect of peripheral lesions on acuity and discrimination in animals. In Graham, A. B., ed. Sensorineural Hearing Processes and Disorders, Boston, Little, Brown and Company, pp. 179–189.Google Scholar
  11. Galambos, R. 1942. The avoidance of obstacles by flying bats. Spallanzani’s ideas (1794) and later theories. Isis, 34:132–140.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. Gourevitch, G., M. H. Hack, and J. E. Hawkins. 1960. Auditory thresholds in the rat measured by an operant technique. Science, 131:1046–1047.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  13. Griffin, D. R.1958. Listening in the Dark, New Haven, Yale University Press.Google Scholar
  14. Griffin, D. R. J. J. G. McCue, and A. D. Grinnell. 1963. The resistance of bats to jamming. J. Exp. Zool., 152:229–250.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. Grinnell, A. D.1963. The neurophysiology of audition in bats. J. Physiol. (London), 167:38–127.Google Scholar
  16. Miller, J. D., C. S. Watson, and W. P. Covell. 1963. Deafening effects of noise on the cat. Acta Otolaryng. (Stockholm), Suppl. 176.Google Scholar
  17. Vernon, J. A., J. I. Dalland, and E. G. Wever. 1966. Further studies of hearing in the bat, Myotis lucifugus, by means of cochlear potentials. J. Aud. Res., 6:153–163.Google Scholar
  18. Wever, E. G. 1966. Electrical potentials of the cochlea. Physiol. Rev., 46:102–127.Google Scholar
  19. Wever, E. G. and J. A. Vernon. 1961. Hearing in the bat, Myotis lucifugus, as shown by the cochlear potentials. J. Aud. Res., 1:158–175.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 1970

Authors and Affiliations

  • John I. Dalland
    • 1
  1. 1.Division of Social Sciences, Richmond CollegeThe City University of New YorkStaten IslandUSA

Personalised recommendations