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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Linda Jacobs-Condit, AuD, CCC-A(George Washington University)
Description: This compilation of 47 articles covers important principles required for the thorough understanding of pediatric audiological evaluations. The articles cover a range of topics from the development of audition in infants to current practices in pediatric assessments and hearing loss in special populations. The book is well organized and the articles provide detailed information in a style that caters to the intended audience. Following each section is a list of additional readings available for those who desire to explore any area in greater depth.
Purpose: According to the author, the goal is to provide a core of knowledge that should be considered essential to those in the field of pediatric audiology. Each paper was carefully selected from referenced journals. In addition to classic papers, the authors incorporate a number of more recent works so that technological advances and rapidly changing protocols of assessment can build upon the basic principles of pediatric audiology.
Audience: Fred Bess is currently serving as Associate Director of the Vanderbilt Bill Wilkerson Center of Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences. Dr. Bess's recent research interests include minimal hearing loss in children, auditory characteristics of children with autism, and auditory rehabilitation for the elderly. Judith Gravel is the Director of The Center for Childhood Communication at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia. Dr. Gravel's areas of research include newborn hearing screenings, early hearing detection intervention, and otitis media. The authors of the incorporated works represent a range of experts from clinicians to researchers.
Features: An overview of the development of auditory function begins the book, followed by a review of developmental changes in speech discrimination in infants. Subsequent chapters cover protocols and fundamental principles behind audiometric assessment. This includes a review of age-appropriate methods from behavioral observation audiometry to visual reinforcement and play audiometry. The sections on electrophysiological methodology are thorough and well written. The chapters on screenings cover the breadth of related topics from techniques to controversies on the issue of early identification protocols.
Assessment: This is a useful book in that it compiles a number of detailed papers on the fundamental principles of developmental audiology, pediatric assessments, and ethical issues in the field. The organization is logical and the topics are wide-ranging. The additional readings listed at the end of each section provide a great source for those interested in further exploration of these principles. Also included is information on new areas emerging in audiology and ethical dilemmas in early identification methodology.