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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Ronald C. Scherer, PhD (Bowling Green State University)
Description: This new book surveys important topics dealing with the science of speech production and perception. Contents include basic anatomy of speech and hearing subsystems, neural bases of speech, physiologic and acoustic phonetics, speech perception, theories of speech production and perception, applications to applied speech sciences, the evolution of speech, and the embryology of speech organs.
Purpose: The book attempts to provide a framework covering the speech sciences, with enough information to establish a valid functional understanding of speech. The author meets this goal superbly by wisely selecting and clearly discussing many important and current topics.
Audience: The book is written for undergraduate students in speech pathology and audiology, communication sciences, and allied fields. The book can also be used in graduate courses to fill in gaps created by other texts and to provide preliminary overviews.
Features: The primary goal of explaining speech function is enhanced by relevant anatomical and instrumentation information. A distinguishing aspect is the inclusion of sections on gender differences, developmental characteristics, evolution, and embryology. The broad coverage is greatly enhanced by many fine, often beautiful, figures (including 12 color plates); well selected references for further reading; and interesting exercises that encourage deeper thinking. There is a glossary of 611 items, answers to selected problems, and a relatively complete index. The frequent quotes from numerous authors and famous individuals should enhance students' interest.
Assessment: This exceptional book fills two needs — to improve the available texts and materials used in speech science courses and to move the curricula for undergraduate and graduate training in communication disorders to necessary higher levels. This book should be strongly considered for inclusion in all speech science courses, for purchase by all libraries at universities with communication and allied health programs, and by all students and faculty dealing with speech production and perception.