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Who remembers when they first learned to listen?
I'm Alan Ehrlich, Chair of the Listening Disorders Division of the Global Listening Centre and a past president of the International Listening Association. I have been studying, writing and speaking about listening disorders for the past 17 years and I have found that, unfortunately, there is a growing percentage of the population that is finding it difficult to hold up their side of a conversation, enjoy music, or recognize important sound patterns. They might be able to hear people talking but have enormous difficulty in understanding the words that are being said. They can hear, but they can't listen!
To many, listening is about understanding speech but we listen too much more than just lingual sound-streams. In addiiton to speech sounds we listen to the birds singing, medical personnel listen to our heart sounds, auto mechanics listen to the sounds of the engine they're working on—much more than just speech.
A Listening Disorder is a physical, cognitive, psychological, or external condition that inteferes with one or more of the normal processes of listening.