This document is a major academic work in the area of Developmental Psycho-Acoustics which can be roughly summarised as the human development of auditory perceptual capacity from gestation through to early infancy. The abstract is below for reference, please feel free to download the pdf file if it is something that interests you.


The present study aims to overview the development of the human auditory perceptual capacity beginning in the gestational period and leading up to early infancy. Initial focus is placed upon the characterisation of the foetal sound environment which leads onto consideration of the related auditory responses of the foetus in such an environment. The considerations include characterisation of the stimulus and response and both testing methodologies and relative contextual information which are critiqued as it pertains to auditory perception. This leads to further understanding foetal reaction to sound. The transmission characteristics of stimuli are assessed as are relative contextual information such as cognitive development. The identification of factors responsible for developmental changes is a primary aim and aids in the study of age related changes in sensitivity to sound. Further studies of neonates and infants are included and critiqued giving a functional overview of the psychoacoustic development of the human during the period leading up to early infancy. Techniques employed to determine absolute and masked thresholds in Infancy are outlined and comparisons made, where applicable, between infant perceptual capacity and that of an adult. Finally the relationship between related contextual fields is assessed and suggestions for future improvements made, particularly between the fields of developmental psychoacoustics and paediatric audiology.