Chapter 11 - Auditory and Vestibular Systems The Nature of...

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Auditory and Vestibular Systems The Nature of Sound Frequency is the number of compressed or rarefied patches of air that pass by our ears each second o Whether a sound is perceived to have a high or a low tone, or pitch, is determined by the frequency Structure of the auditory system Pinna is the funnel of outer ear that helps collect sounds from a wide area o Shape makes us more sensitive to sound coming from ahead than from behind Tympanic membrane (eardrum) is at the end of the auditory canal o Medial to the eardrum are the ossicles Ossicles transfer movements of the tympanic membrane into movements of a second membrane covering a hole in the bone of the skull called the oval window Behind the oval window is the fluid-filled cochlea which is responsible for the physical to neuronal response of hearing o Once neural response is generated the signal is transferred to and processed by a series of nuclei in the brain stem o
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