Scientific Foundations of Audiology – Perspectives from Physics, Biology, Modeling and Medicine is a unique textbook which discusses a wide range of state-of-the-art topics in hearing, vestibular and brain science. The editors purport that this book is geared towards doctoral students, medics and those operating between innovation and clinical practice. Indeed, the overall impression is that the book assumes a great deal of prior theoretical and practical understanding regarding various facets of audiology.
As such, it excludes many of the basic concepts found in common audiology textbooks, to focus on emerging concepts in practice such as developments in genetics, imaging, auditory implants and speech processing, amongst others. The success of this book owes much to the fact that the issues of translating basic research to clinical practice in each of these topics are discussed in a clear and straightforward manner by all the contributors.
As an experienced audiologist working solely in clinical practice, I rate this book a 3/5. There are certainly some thought provoking discussions but more could have been written about specific innovations in tinnitus, balance and paediatric rehabilitation. Furthermore, this book largely ignores perspectives from psychology which is also an important scientific foundation of audiology. Finally, whilst the book boasts an international list of contributors, the majority are based in the US. Consequently, much reference is made to US based standards which are less applicable in the UK.
Nevertheless, these issues should not detract from the broader relevance of this book in summarising contemporary developments in audiology to its intended audiences. I would highly recommend this textbook as solid background reading to post-graduate students wishing to research any of the topics covered within.