Developing the listening skills of our students is central to audio education, and presents significant challenges. Listening is a highly personalized activity—internally processed in isolation, individualized by experience and physiology, perception and cognition. Add in the absence of a vocabulary for sound and the teaching of unimaginable experiences, the challenge of teaching listening grows. Listening is a process that can be learned, and taught. The process is one of active awareness and concentration; one of being open to possibilities of the unknown at any moment; searching with intention for new information or holding sounds in the focus of attention. Identifying the purpose for listening guides the process and informs the activity. The elements of sound, level of perspective, and function of the materials are identified in successfully hearing material.
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