The perception of pitch

Thomas Stainsby and Ian Cross

in Oxford Handbook of Music Psychology

Published in print December 2008 | ISBN: 9780199298457
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Library of Psychology

 The perception of pitch

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This article discusses pitch perception, beginning with a brief introduction to the function of the auditory system. It considers what limitations there are on our ability to extract frequency information from the sounds reaching our ears, and provides an orientation for some of the mechanisms described in the later sections. The article then reviews relevant psychoacoustic research – how do we construct a sense of pitch from the physical acoustic input? This leads to a consideration of higher auditory-processing functions that include the mechanisms used to interpret the complicated mixture of sounds around us and the relationships between pitch as it applies to music and how it is manifested in speech and language.

Keywords: auditory system; auditory processing; sounds; frequency; psychoacoustic research; music

Article.  7380 words. 

Subjects: Psychology ; Cognitive Psychology

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