Thursday, August 07, 2008

Fetuses said to learn "complex acoustic external sounds"

I justed picked this up as I was browsing through the internet-- it's an abstract of an article from the July 2008 issue of a French OB\GYN journal:

Fetal sensory abilities have been considered for a long time as a philosophical question. The aim of this review is to investigate the scientifically proven knowledge about fetal audition. Fetal audition seems to depend on gestational age and sound characteristics. The onset of human fetal hearing is observed at about 26-28 weeks gestational age. Noises from the placenta, the maternal organs and the maternal voice play a major role as current in utero auditory stimuli. Many studies demonstrate that the fetus forms memories of his hearing experiences allowing some authors to use the term "fetal learning". The fetus can memorise not only his mother's voice but also more complex acoustic external sounds with a big ability of discrimination. Moreover, most studies strengthen the hypothesis of an implicit musical ability of the human brain.

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