Encyclopedia of Evolutionary Psychological Science

Living Edition
| Editors: Todd K. Shackelford, Viviana A. Weekes-Shackelford


  • Rachel H MesserEmail author
Living reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-16999-6_792-1



The sensory process by which auditory stimuli are perceived as sound waves by the ear(s) and then translated to neural signals and comprehended by the brain.


The ability to hear (audition) is an impressive skill that differs greatly among species. For humans, the level of auditory discrimination that has developed over time has evolved not only due to outside influences of everyday noise, but also as a result of hearing’s role in humans’ complex speech and language production and comprehension. Hearing involves external and internal structures, as well as physiological processes that enable sound processing.

The Auditory Process

Essentially, the process of audition is catalyzed by changes in air pressure from the normal surrounding atmospheric level, which are the result of a stimulus such as noise from an object creating patterns of molecule vibrations in the air (Zemlin 1998). This...

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Communication Sciences and DisordersOklahoma State UniversityStillwaterUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Jennifer Byrd-Craven
    • 1
  1. 1.Oklahoma State UniversityStillwaterUSA